Can the world achieve better health through reverse osmosis? With some of the advertising hype used by home reverse osmosis systems, you might think so. But, you can't always believe what you hear.
Many industries use RO, but not for water purification. Typically, they use it to remove one liquid from another. For example, water from sap to make maple syrup, although the membranes have to be checked frequently for contamination.
Kidney patients have better health through reverse osmosis, because a form of the system is used in dialysis machines. I know that many people speak negatively about RO. I have many good things to say about it. I am just not a fan of home reverse osmosis systems for water purification.
Most people are serviced by a public treatment facility. So, their water has already been through an RO step. But, it is only one step in the complete treatment process.
I believe that the value of home reverse osmosis systems is limited to a small number of people. Most people with wells don't need it. Even people with springs don't need it.
Only if you are filtering river or ocean water for use in your home would home reverse osmosis systems be of great value. Otherwise, they are simply not cost effective.
Now, of course, if you do live in a rural area and a river is your only choice, then you can achieve better health through reverse osmosis. But, you will also need to take additional steps to ensure your safety.
You will still need a form of disinfection, a carbon filter and perhaps a multi-media block. Depending on the size of the pores in the membrane, you may still need sub-micron filtration. You might also want to consider re-mineralization, since RO de-mineralizes.
It is those additional steps that make home reverse osmosis systems impractical for most of us. Our water has already been disinfected. It is disinfection by-products that we need to remove, as well as the chemicals used to disinfect.
We need a system called adsorption to remove disinfection by-products and that step is only available is some of the better purifiers. Rather than better health through reverse osmosis, most of us will achieve better health through adsorption.
Exposure to the disinfection byproducts increases a person's risk of cancer. Estimates vary, but by at least 30% for bladder and colorectal cancer. Those byproducts also increase a pregnant woman's risk of having a miscarriage or a child with birth defects. Home reverse osmosis systems do not remove those threats.
And as far as the world or our planet, RO wastes more water than it cleans. That is a fact that bothers conservationists and environmentalists, as well as any of us that are concerned about water shortages. So, no, the world cannot achieve better health through reverse osmosis. Try to find another option.
Larry Fletcher is an avid proponent of water purification and a passionate researcher on its health benefits. To get the facts on how to choose the best water purification system, visit http://www.pure-and-safe-water.com now.