While most of us think that our drinking water is pure and healthy for us, various studies conducted across the globe have proven the existence of heavy metals in drinking water. These heavy metals can get into your drinking water via industrial, municipal, or urban runoff, and can be toxic and lethal to humans and animals. Increased urbanisation and industrialisation are some of the reasons for increased amounts of heavy metals in our drinking water.
There are in excess of 50 elements that are classified as heavy metals which can be found in drinking water, seventeen of which are extremely toxic. Some of these heavy metals are arsenic, copper, chromium, lead, mercury, zinc, and cadmium. Some of them can be tolerated in our drinking water because they are needed by the body in minute doses, but they can be toxic in larger doses.
There are various health risks involved in drinking water that contains heavy metals, especially for the younger generation:
Young people drinking water containing heavy metals regularly can suffer from:
- Behavioural problems such as aggressiveness;
- Damage to the nervous system;
- Impaired growth and development;
- Learning difficulties; and
- Memory impairment.
Adults who drink water containing heavy metals on a regular basis may experience:
- Death ( in extreme cases);
- Nervous system damage; and
- Organ damage.
Exposure to mercury in the drinking water could lead to the development of autoimmune disease, which results in an individual’s immune system attacking itself. This could, in turn, lead to diseases of the circulatory system, the nervous system, the kidneys, and or joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.
Make sure that your drinking water is heavy metal free by using a water filter or investing in a water cooler that filters all toxins out before the water reaches your glass.