A new report in the Society of Toxicology demonstrates something we probably never knew about our drinking water. It shows an unhealthy relationship between toxic contaminants and our gut microbiome. One such toxic contaminant findings that stood out was in our tap water: ARSENIC.
When over 286 million Americans flick their kitchen tap, the water comes from a municipal water system. Problem? Yes.
In the last decade, researchers in the microbial bacteria field have learnt more than they ever understood before. We now know far, far more about the microorganisms in our body. They outnumber our human cells by 10 to 1. So when we are asked what we are, we can truthfully say, germs. Research now shows that we overproduce bacteria when drinking tap water, and it tells us what we can do to stop it..
The contaminant that creates the bacteria that is shown may cause heart disease
We now learn that long term exposure to arsenic has a connection to cancer. It’s well researched. This latest in-depth study reveals more concerning evidence of the dangers of arsenic.
The study concluded a significant association with exposure to arsenic in drinking water and genus Citrobacter and IMT. Genus Citrobacter was overproduced in straight from the tap-water drinkers. These bacteria can be found almost everywhere in soil, water, wastewater, etc. They have been shown to relate to adverse conditions found in the human intestine.
Bottom line: Citrobacter can increase urinary tract infections, respiratory diseases, sepsis in immunocompromised patients, and inflamed gastrointestinal tracts.
Along with the overproduction of this harmful bacteria, IMT (vascular intima-media thickness) also increased. High IMT can lead to cardiovascular issues, and the #1 top offender is atherosclerosis. (Clogged arteries from built-up plaque). With heart disease accounting for 1 in 4 American deaths, we can not afford to increase our chances of cardiovascular problems.
We have trillions of microorganisms in our gut, so caring enough to ingest the right things to support a biodiverse culture is a priority. Our gut bacteria is often called our second brain. It affects our moods, behaviours, and food cravings.
How much is too much?
Studies were undertaken in Bangladesh, maybe a bit too scary. There, the level of arsenic in drinking water is five times higher than levels in the US. The problem lies in the fact that researchers have not yet discovered the cut-off point: where our gut microbiome ceases being affected by arsenic levels in tap water.
With arsenic even showing up in bottled water, when will enough be enough?
In some parts of America, tap water is banned in California Central Valley due to its high arsenic levels. If you live in the southwest or close to the Rockies you may also have arsenic levels on the edge of unsafe.
Don’t hold your breath. Only 92% of America’s drinking water termed “safe,” How many cancer, cardiovascular, and respiratory diseases will it take to discover how much arsenic exposure affects us?
It is now considered normal to accept our tap water without question. We’ve always been told our water is “good for us.”
If you are confident of your knowledge in the natural health fields you may already be vigilant with their purification methods. Do you tell your friends? Do they believe you? Or do they prefer the simple answers?
Can You Rebuild your gut microbiome? Luckily, Yes.
We can‘t control the minimum acceptable water standards. But we can own our own actions with simple steps.
Get a water purification system that demonstrates conclusively that it removes arsenic. Not all water systems are the same. Most only focus on the removal of chlorine, taste odour and smell. Activated carbon filtration will remove up to 70%, and reverse osmosis will remove arsenic up to 90%. Either of these options will reduce the level of arsenic enormously. Link this with the most commonly used fluoride reduction media, which also reduced arsenic, and your filter will give you a double whammy approach. When you start investigating this more sophisticated form of filter, you’ll also be able to learn about how to rid your water of the many other contaminants we seldom hear about, like PFAs, pharmaceuticals, heavy metals, chloramines, disinfection byproducts and many, many more! Make sure, as you research to carefully check the test data offered by the vendors. Look for the only test that really matters: Whole of Life testing. What the filter does – not on day one, but on day 365!
There is far more research that we need to proactively manage gut health. Hopefully, you are now aware of the additional risk factors of arsenic consumption.
Sources: Academic.oup.com Healthline.com Cancer.org NYTimes.com Livescience.com WHO.int CDC.gov NIH.gov