Reverse osmosis is a process used to remove harmful contaminants from water. After the process, the result should be pure water that is free from toxins such as lead and chlorine. Over time, these contaminants can have serious side effects on the body, thus necessitating the use of water filters.
That said, while RO technology is effective, it sometimes compromises all the useful resources such as minerals in the water. Even if it removes contaminants, expect water that lacks essential minerals such as magnesium or calcium.
So, is it safe to consume RO water? Do you have to re-mineralize the water before you drink it for your needs? What are the factors associated with the water filtrations procedure? In this guide, we look at all the key aspects you have to consider before consuming such water.
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What Happens to The Water During Reverse Osmosis?
You may have come across the term reverse osmosis, but are you aware of the process’s result?
Here is a quick break down of what to expect:
A RO filter system features a filter and membrane that works to filter the water of contaminants before it is safe for human consumption. It is a basic filtration system, which targets toxins at the microscopic level.
The RO membrane lets water pass through while removing any substance that averages larger than 0.0001-micron pore size.
To make it easy to understand, 1 micron on average equals an average of 0.00005 inches. Also, the size of the average human hair averages 75 microns.
The role of the semipermeable membrane is to catch and destroy bacteria or impurities that exist in water. Furthermore, it also helps ensure that salt and other minerals won’t get through the filtration system. As such, you should know that the levels of minerals in RO water are significantly low.
In locations with water that has toxic substances and is unsafe to drink, RO can be a highly convenient process. As a contemporary water purification resource, that said, is it doing more harm than good when in use.
How to Remineralize RO Water
Nowadays, modern RO systems for homes come with inbuilt filters, which will improve the quality of water. Why? They help to reintroduce the lost minerals during the water filtrations process.
That said, there are many other tricks you can use to complete this process:
Add Mineral Rich Salt
No, it’s not the way you would expect. It does not mean getting table salt and adding it to your system. Instead, you may have to use a special type of salt, which has dense materials. For instance, a good example would be Himalayan salt.
It’s a type of salt that contains well over 80 trace minerals and is also highly affordable. Using fine salt would be best in this case, such that you won’t have to worry about taste complications in the water. Also, consider going for a small amount for every glass of water, or perhaps add ¼ teaspoon for every gallon of water.
Adding Mineralized Water
If you want to determine how to re-introduce minerals of water without lots of energy, then this approach is highly convenient. You will find it easy to re-mineralize almost any amount of water quickly and easily by adding a few drops each time.
Calibrate the RO Water pH Level with A Filter
You can perform the remineralization process right at the water source, which can be highly convenient. It’s also an excellent way to install an additional filter to your current system. Plus, a pH balancing or remineralization filter is easy to install DIY to make it perfect for most fridges today.
Once you filter the water, some of the minerals will be re-introduced to the system. The specific amount depends on the flow of water, the temperature, and the current pH level of the water. While there is evidence of this procedure being effective, the results depend on the process’s elements.
Use an Alkaline Pitcher
An equally useful option would be to invest in an alkaline pitcher, which is ideal for enhancing the water’s pH levels. Several unique pitcher brands on the market are easy to use and compatible with most water systems.
Also, these pitchers can adjust the level, as well as re-mineralize the RO water for convenience. Other brands come with clocks integrated, to count down for the next change of filters required.
The Affected Minerals
Reverse osmosis is a process with its roots in military applications, where it was common in the production of drinking water. From this critical perspective came one with a more commercial point of view – and this was that households that use RO systems could create pure water.
However, the process might compromise the water’s mineral content, and the following minerals might go missing:
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body, and it makes up for a significant portion of your body weight. Besides being present in the teeth and bones, calcium is an essential mineral for cell functions. These include muscle/vascular functions, regulation of hormones, nerve functions, and more.
Due to the integral role calcium plays in the body, a shortage can have serious side effects on the body. Aside from leading to weaker bones or even issues such as osteoporosis, a calcium defect can have many other detrimental side effects. These might include fatal heart arrhythmias and convulsions.
This is also another crucial element in the body because it supports your overall health and well-being. It also plays a significant role in the several biochemicals in the body and the making of healthy bones.
The typical human body carries around 30mg of magnesium, with most of it existing in the bones. The remaining amount exists in the soft tissues.
The only challenge in measuring magnesium levels is because most of it exits in the bones. A deficiency can lead to profound complications, including nausea, fatigue, and even weakness.
Increased magnesium deficiency in the body can also cause seizures, personality changes, cramps, and more.
While magnesium and calcium are the critical minerals removed by RO, many other minerals also get compromised. The common ones include iron, zinc, chromium, copper, manganese, and more. These are all crucial elements that have significant roles to play in body functions.
Does This Mean the End of Reverse Osmosis Water?
Since minerals play an integral role in the body, and RO might compromise these elements, does this mean you should avoid filtered water?
No, because there are many solutions for this problem.
While the minerals in water are essential for body health, avoiding bacteria, chemicals, and contamination is also important.
The solution in such a case is not to avoid RO but recalibrate the amount of minerals in the water. It’s a process that may involve remineralization, which will ensure your water has a sufficient amount of nutrients.
If you are wondering about useful techniques for re-mineralizing water, then there are some options you should consider. Reverse osmosis is not as hard as it seems, but you may have to invest in useful supplies.
Enjoying clean water is vital for anyone because water plays a significant role in various cell functions. Plus, in its natural state, water often contains multiple essential nutrients, which are also crucial for body functions. That said, the water is sometimes compromised by issues such as dirt and contaminants. Thus, guides such as how to remineralize RO water are excellent places for you to start. This guide provides useful information you need to know about and tackle RO water issues.