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Is it Safe to Drink RO Water?

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RO purifier water has merits as well de-merits, and while it may pose some negative health effects over short and long terms, it cannot be categorised as “very dangerous for us”.

First let's see the merits (assuming its use for household level drinking water purification). The membrane is a non-chemical, non-residue leaving, physical process of removal of contaminants from water. The removal of contaminants is dependent on the size of the pores in the RO membrane. Because of its very small size (of the order of 0.001 microns) the membrane is capable of removing practically everything from water, giving highly purified water. This water could also be used for surgical and pharmaceutical purposes.

Reverse osmosis is a highly economical and efficient way of obtaining drinking water from sea through desalination. Other methods like distillation are highly energy intensive, for desalination.

Is it Safe to Drink RO Water?

The demerits arise in the process of reverse osmosis, which must necessarily reject a concentrated solution containing all the contaminants. This rejected water is highly contaminated that needs to be disposed of properly, which is never done at the household level. Also the yield of purified water is very low at the household level. Out of every 5 litres of water input into the RO purifier, only 1 litre is obtained as purified water.

Now coming to the health impacts of it, we can safely say the RO demineralises water to the extent that it remains unfit for drinking. Loss of minerals could lead to lack of minerals in the body. This water does not quench our thirst. Prolonged use could lead to certain ailments like reduction in bone density. The pH of the water is also reduced, giving it a sour taste. But in cases where there are chances of ingesting carcinogens, RO comes as a saviour.

I hope that answers the question

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