According to the OC Register,
Wells of nearly two dozen Southern California water agencies have reportable levels of PFAS, a chemical family increasingly linked to cancer, liver and kidney damage, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, low fertility, low birth weight and ulcerative colitis.
Seven of those agencies have shut down wells in the past year because of the presence of those chemicals and two more plan closures, an investigation by the Southern California News Group found.
PFAS are commonly used in food packaging and a whole lot of consumer products, including stain- and water-repellent fabrics, nonstick surfacing, cleaning products, and more. When they get into our environment, they don’t biodegrade. They are FOREVER.
“PFAS is the climate change of toxic chemicals,” said Andria Ventura, toxics program manager for the advocacy group Clean Water Action. “They never go away. Virtually all Americans have them in their blood. Babies are born with them. … They’re some of the scariest things I’ve worked on.”
And water is typically the largest source of exposure.
Of course, you need water to live. Every cell of your body requires it. It’s essential to every metabolic process. No water, no life. So the question becomes, “If standard water treatment doesn’t get rid of them, how do I make sure I get clean drinking water?”
Your best bet for removing PFAS – and other chemical contaminants – from your drinking water is to install and maintain an in-home reverse osmosis system, though some carbon filters appear to be effective, as well. EWG reports that as of 2018, NSF International has certified 71 products as capable of reducing PFOS and PFOA – two common PFAS – to the EPA’s health advisory level.
In general, reverse osmosis systems more consistently removed PFAS compared to activated carbon systems.
Most reverse osmosis systems also have the benefit of an additional activated carbon filtration stage included in the system. Reverse osmosis systems remove a wider range of other contaminants from drinking water and their effectiveness can be tested at home using an electrical conductivity meter. But activated carbon filter systems are significantly less expensive than reverse osmosis systems. Carbon filters must be changed on schedule as they will lose their effectiveness over time.
Be aware, though, that there’s a downside to reverse osmosis (RO): Along with the bad stuff, they also strip out essential minerals such as calcium and magnesium.
Those lost minerals can be restored, though – either by adding a remineralization filter to your system, or adding mineral drops or a small amount of Himalayan sea salt to your RO water before consuming it. (The salt needs to be very finely ground, though, to keep the water from tasting salty.)
Those last two options will also work if you buy bottled RO water. (Most purified waters are treated with RO.)
While upping your filtration game will go a long way toward helping you limit your PFAS exposure, it’s important to remember that we can be exposed in other ways, as well. And that brings us back to the matter of detox.
We’ve noted before that even if you make the healthiest choices possible for yourself, you’re still exposed to countless toxins every day simply by breathing, eating, and drinking. All of us are. So it helps to make detox part of your regular health regimen, turning to tools such as chelation or other drip therapies, for instance, or homeopathic protocols that can encourage and support your body’s innate detox abilities, or nutritional support, and much more.
We’re happy to work with you to come up with a custom plan that meets your specific needs. Just give us a call to get started.
Image by r. nial bradshaw, via Flickr