Doctors recommend that we consume at least 8 glasses(or about 2 litres) of water per day to keep our bodies healthy and functioning well. Choosing the right water to consume, however, might seem a simple task but the reality is that it’s a bit more complicated. That’s because drinking water encompasses quite a wide range of “drinking waters.”

Drinking water is defined as any type of water (regardless of the source) that complies with the stipulated water safety standards set by the government for water that is intended for human consumption. Generally, drinking water has no ingredients and is supposed to contain “safe” levels of disinfectants and contaminants.

Types of drinking water

 The different types of drinking water include (source: Pestrol NZ)

  1. Tap water.This is the most widely available type of drinking and also the cheapest. Tap water is, however, not the safest water for drinking as it meets the bare minimum of requirements for it to termed “safe.” Tap water is, in most cases, disinfected using chlorine; a chemical that has been found to cause a number of problems to the body such as increasing the risk of some types of cancers.

The water that comes out of your tap could also contain heavy metals such as arsenic, mercury, and lead. Lead is perhaps the most prevalent, especially if either your home or the community’s water supply piping is really old. Some treatment facilities may also fluoridate their water – a practice that has been found to do more harm than good. Tap water generally contains the highest amount of contaminants of all drinking water types.

  1. Spring water. This type of water, as the name suggests, comes from natural springs. It could either be bottled at the source or transported to a facility off-site for bottling. Spring water, although attractive to many people due to the “100% natural” tag, is not really the purest water you could drink. Although the spring water is micron and carbon filtered before being bottled, the filtration methods used do not get rid of most of the impurities in the water. The cost of the water is also quite high which makes this type of drinking water unaffordable to many.
  2. Filtered water. This is the type of drinking water you are most likely to find in many outlets selling water. Typically this water is sourced from the municipal supply and then filtered further before being bottled. The water is filtered using carbon filters to remove chlorine and could sometimes be micron filtered to remove other impurities. The filtration process is minimal and leaves impurities such as heavy metals and minerals in the water.
  3. Purified water. This is one of the purest types of drinking water. The water, which can originate from surface or groundwater sources or springs is thoroughly purified using methods such as reverse osmosis and deionization to remove most of the contaminants in it. To comply with the legal definition of “purified water,” the water impurities in this type of water must be reduced to very low levels. This is one of the safest options when it comes to drinking water with the main disadvantage being the cost which can be somewhat prohibitive.
  4. Distilled water. This is the purest water you can drink. Distilled water is water that’s been purified through the distillation process. Basically, water is evaporated for the purpose of separating it from contaminants and then condensed into a clean container. Distillation is extremely effective at eliminating contaminants and will get rid of metals, chemicals, minerals and other particles in the water. Volatile compounds that have a lower boiling point are not eliminated through distillation, however, but passing the distilled water through a carbon filter will get rid of them.

High-quality home and commercial water distillers come fitted with a carbon filter specifically for this purpose. Water distillation combined with carbon filtration produces water that is up to 99.9% purethe purest and safest type of water to drink. Water distillation is also affordable with home distillation units going for as low as a few hundred dollars – and for a one-time purchase, that’s very affordable.

With numerous types of drinking water to choose from, it is important that you take the time to pick the purest to ensure that you gain the benefits of drinking adequate water without the bad side effects that come as a result of consuming water contaminants.