Water. It hydrates you, powers you through workouts, and makes up 65 percent of your body. But lately, you may have some concerns.
Last year, chemical sludge from a shoe manufacturer was found in the tap water of Plainfield Township, Michigan. The area lies about 120 miles from Flint, where, in 2015, dangerous levels of lead were found in the city’s drinking supply. Experts soon linked the tainted water to local outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease (a severe form of pneumonia).
More than a dozen people died, fertility rates plummeted, and the toll on countless children’s future health might not be known for a generation.
Michigan isn’t the only state with water worries. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a nonprofit environmental advocacy group, found that in 2015 (the most recent year available), one-quarter of Americans drank water from systems that violated rules set by the Safe Drinking Water Act.
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(And that doesn’t include the more than 13 million private well systems exempt from federal safety requirements.) Scores more municipalities operate on leaky, lead-laden infrastructure. At least 6 million city water pipes in the U.S. are made of the metal, which is so dangerous there is no acceptable safe level, and many local governments have thin budgets for replacement, says Erik Olson, director of health and food at the NRDC.
It’s not just bad plumbing that could be junking up your faucet’s flow. Some lakes, rivers, and groundwater are polluted by worrisome levels of natural compounds like arsenic, human-made chemicals, and agricultural runoff such as animal waste, fertilizers, and pesticides. The treatment plants designed to remove contaminants don’t always operate up to par (most use century-old technology). Sometimes residents aren’t immediately told when issues are found.
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SOURCE: (Women’s Health)