Healthful Habits: Water Woes

Healthful Habits is a way for our family to intentionally implement a more wholesome style of living one small step at a time. The process of executing these small changes over the course of a year enables them to become lifelong habits.

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."
{ Aristotle }

{Kitchen Sink Tap Water Filtration}**

Living in the heart of Midwestern farm country, we've know for some time studies have shown our county to have one of the most polluted water supplies in the country.* Given that our place of employment is a school situated in the middle of a cornfield and drawing from an underground well, hubby and I have always preferred to carry our own bottled water. In an effort to eliminate toxic exposure and reduce our use of plastic, a few years ago we began purchasing bottled water in larger containers to refill our BPA-free water bottles.

Despite our improvements in this area, the lack of information regarding the source and purification process of our bottled water continued to disturb us. Purchasing the large amounts of water we consume also began to take its toll on our grocery budget. Just before Thanksgiving of this past year, we finally began the healthful habit we'd discussed for some time- water filtration.

While we would love to invest in a whole house filtration system, that option is not affordable within the limits of our current budget. The above filter works great for all our water for cooking, food cleaning, and drinking. Hubby has even taken to using this sink for brushing his teeth! Since the rest of our water throughout the house is not filtered, we also implemented the following habits.***
  • Running a fan, opening the bathroom door, and {when possible} cracking the bathroom window when showering to reduce chlorine exposure through steam buildup****
  • Allowing as little hot water as possible to come in contact with our skin in order to eliminate the additional toxic exposure of the metal/plastic in the water heater and pipes (i.e. taking cooler showers, using cold water for hand/face washing)
  • Using the dishwasher as much as possible or using drops {containing sodium thiosulfate} to dechlorinate hot water before hand washing dishes
  • Using the hot temperature cycle on the clothes dryer {or we could dry them in full, bright sunlight... which we don't}
  • Never use hot tap water for cooking or baking.
  • Avoid chlorinated swimming pools as much as possible
Overall, we have this healthful habit to be one of the easier ones to implement, and {at least to us} an important one to make. After all, "you are what you eat {er... drink}"!


Investigate the contents of your own tap water supply on the Environmental Working Group site, or check with your city's supplier for a full-disclosure statement.

In making the decision of which faucet filter to purchase, the information provided on the Water Filtration Comparison site was extremely helpful. In addition to drinking water filtration, they also provide research on whole house filtration systems and shower filtration systems. There is also a wealth of information on the Environmental Working Group site regarding tap water.

Many of these ideas come from Growing Up Green by Deirdre Imus. While I don't know that I would recommend the book for purchase, if you can borrow a copy it's a pretty good read. She articulates the philosophy behind the "Green This!" series in this article. The most informative part of this book was the appendix where she recommends various products and websites.

We are currently discussing/saving for the purchase of a shower filter to remove the chlorine in our bath water. With any luck this will be one of the healthful habit steps we take this year. Then we can go back to enjoying long, hot showers again!