We already know plastic is polluting the world’s oceans, lakes, and rivers in major ways. Now, new research found it’s likely also contaminating your filtered, bottled water.
The study, published last week, tested more than 250 plastic water bottles from 19 different locations in nine countries, and more than 90 percent of the bottles contained tiny pieces of plastic (AKA “microplastics”).
11 different brands—including popular choices like Aquafina, Dasani, and Evian—were tested, with an average of 325 plastic particles per liter found. In the most shocking example, one bottle of Nestle’s Pure Life contained 10,000 particles per liter, according to the Guardian.
How did all those tiny plastic particles get in there? Companies like Nestle disputed the study’s methods. But other experts pointed to the plastic packaging and bottling process as likely to blame.
Meanwhile, what effect drinking those particles could have on your health is mostly unknown. Research suggests a lot of the plastic likely passes through the body, but some might get stuck in the gut or lymphatic system (where its effects are, again, unknown). The good news is that in response to the study, the World Health Organization announced it would launch a review of the potential risks of plastic in drinking water.
The biggest takeaway, though? This just gives you one more reason to avoid buying plastic water bottles, as if you needed another. We already know they’re awful for the environment (especially since more than 90 percent end up in landfills instead of getting recycled), and manufacturing them means using more plastic, which means more plastic that might get into your water, your body….sigh. Just, embrace the tap, people. If you’re concerned about what’s in your tap water, may we suggest a faucet filtration system?
(Featured Photo: Pixabay)