Myths about RO water

Pure water is certainly a boon to our health. Water is a prime component of our diets. Naturally, its quality influences our health. Poor water quality leads to a poor well-being. Clearly, drinking pure water is important. So, how do we ensure that the water we drink is pure? Use RO water.

Theoretically reverse osmosis water systems strip everything out of the water except for H2O molecules. However in actual practice this is not true.

  • Some say that because RO water purifiers removes everything, including any essential minerals the water may contain, it is not good. This is not true, essential mineral for our body should come from the food we eat and not from the water we drink.
  • Others say that RO water is Acidic and not good for health. Yes, the water after being purified by an RO purifier does become acidic because Reverse Osmosis filtration removes the alkaline mineral atoms from salt molecules, for example the Calcium atom from the molecule of Calcium Bicarbonate is removed. What remains is Carbon Dioxide which forms H₂CO₃ or Carbonic acid, which is the same as soda water.
    Also consider the fact that human stomach has much stronger acids like HCl or Hydrochloric Acid. If at all H₂CO₃ or Carbonic acid was in any way dangerous to human health, then you would not have Pepsi, Coca Cola and Soda water being sold freely all over the world. RO water is for sure contains much less acid than in Coca Cola or Pepsi.
  • Infect some think RO water becomes oxygen free. Water is made up of H20 two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen. If pure water had no oxygen, then it wouldn’t be water. But the dissolved oxygen is not the same as the oxygen in the water molecule. Water contains dissolved gases by diffusion from the surrounding air. Reverse osmosis will not remove all contaminants from water as dissolved gases such as dissolved oxygen and carbon dioxide not being removed.
  • Many RO water purifiers have a special cartridge containing purified alkali chemicals like Calcium carbonate, over which the purified RO water flows through before being delivered in the RO water purifier tap. This neutralises any acid in the RO water and will improve the taste of the RO water.

RO is a better option than having mercury, lead, arsenic and disease-causing microbes in your water. But a few things need to be kept in mind –

  • It is a great idea to use Ultraviolet (UV) light in line with RO because there might be some viruses on which RO might not work but UV will.
  • Also RO water is short on good minerals as the get filtered out. So relying on RO water for daily minerals count, especially salts won’t be a good idea. Continue taking a proper nutritional diet and there won’t be any problem.
  • RO won’t effectively filter an incoming water of TDS above 2500 ppm. Normally this won’t happen but a check needs to be maintained. Drinking water should not cross a TDS of 500 ppm with anything under 75 ppm being optimal.

By:-Swati Sharma
Department of MLT.
Uttaranchal (P.G.) College Of Bio-Medical Sciences & Hospital