JAN 04, 2018 7:41 PM PST

The 'Raw Water' Trend

WRITTEN BY: Carmen Leitch

People have come up with some questionable ideas and managed to make them into successful business ventures, but sometimes the public sees through the hype and the idea fizzles. Last year, the Juicero machine was introduced as a great way to make smoothies, but the expensive proprietary bags needed for the machine drew widespread ridicule. The Silicon Valley entrepreneur behind the concept, Doug Evans, has been linked to another ridiculous idea. He’s now moved on to “raw water,” an unfiltered and untreated way to hydrate yourself with liquid from the mystery springs of the world. He wants to ‘get off the water grid,’ according to the New York Times.

Live Water is bringing raw water collected from springs to consumers, claiming that it has beneficial microbes in it. Their company website has a falsehood on its home page, however; they note the average human carries ten times as many microbial cells as human cells. That was disproven a few years ago, it is estimated that the ratio is closer to one-to-one. That calls into question any claims they make, as far as this writer is concerned. One must have a solid foundation of knowledge if they are to properly educate others.

It is a known fact that many municipal sources of drinking water contain contaminants and even poisons. There are many communities in America that unfortunately have a real reason to be wary of the liquid that is coming from their faucets. Unfiltered spring water that has not been evaluated by the FDA is unlikely to be the answer to their problems, however. 

A screenshot of the Live Water website

Many people are also concerned about what fluoride additives in water might be doing to their bodies. While there is evidence that fluoride can help prevent tooth decay, there is no evidence to support claims that it can be used as a form of mind-control, as some conspiracy theorists believe.

While it is true that the bacteria living on and in our bodies is linked to an ever-increasing number of medical conditions, there is no way to know right now whether halting the consumption of tap water and starting a regimen of raw water would actually be of any real benefit. Because bottled water is usually passed through a UV filter that kills bacteria, raw water is marketed to be much better than any other kind you might be able to get your hands on – it still has the bacteria in it.

Live Water has taken the time to have some third-party testing performed on the water it has harvested, and it does contain known bacterial strains. However, the strains that were found have not been shown to provide any health benefit to people that ingest them. One strain in the sample has even been suspected to be a pathogen.

There seem to be few definite benefits, and plenty of risks, with raw water. If you are concerned about what's in your water, a better option is to get a quality water filter and use it with the stuff that comes from your tap.

Sources: ARS Technica, New York Times, Live Water

About the Author
Bachelor's (BA/BS/Other)
Experienced research scientist and technical expert with authorships on over 30 peer-reviewed publications, traveler to over 70 countries, published photographer and internationally-exhibited painter, volunteer trained in disaster-response, CPR and DV counseling.
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