Does Reverse Osmosis Remove Pharmaceuticals From Water? - By: Venkata Krishnan Rajagopalan
Water is life and the quality of any water that we drink and use around our homes should be the best. There are so many water filtration products and processes on the market. Does reverse osmosis remove pharmaceuticals from water? Is a charcoal filter better than a UV filtration system? Should you install a shower filter?
The average consumer can come away feeling more confused than reassured when looking at a good quality filtration system for home installation. You may well be considering the option of a reverse osmosis system. This has been touted as one of the better products on the market, but truth be told, it removes all essential nutrients and trace elements.
Reverse osmosis is a process that takes any goodness out of the water, basically leaving you with dead water. Unfortunately we live in a society where people pollute our water supply with chemicals and pharmaceuticals, often disposing of expired medication by flushing it down the toilet or pouring it down the sink.
These medications filter into our drinking water, but the treatment plants which purify and recycle our water cannot leech these harmful chemicals from the water supply. You are unwittingly ingesting trace amounts of pharmaceuticals in any number of dangerous combinations. The reverse osmosis process does not remove these products from the water supply.
The process works by filtering water through a series of semi-permeable membranes designed to trap in an attempt to purify your water. Pressure is applied to literally force water through the membrane in an attempt to remove harmful bacteria and chemicals. Larger molecules, including some bacterias, trace elements and minerals, become trapped by this process and it is effective to a nominal degree.
Unfortunately the smaller molecules of pharmaceuticals that are water soluble are able to pass through this semi-permeable filter and they remain in the drinking water. It will also not remove chlorine from the water. This chemical not only gives water an unpleasant taste and odor, but has potential health risks.
Chlorine has been linked to increased instances of various types of cancer that affect the bowels, bladder and rectal area. In the case of heated water, such as in a shower or bath, the process of heating the water actually releases the chlorine into the air in gaseous form, which we then inhale. To ensure that a reverse osmosis system removes this dangerous chemical, a carbon post filter should be installed.
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