For as long as we can tell, hard water was constantly given a bad rep because of being reported to include minerals like calcium and magnesium, which can present problems to your health, no doubt, but it would appear that softened water isn’t quite as beneficial as we were led to believe.
Yes, hard water does carry minerals and cause problems to homeowners such as:
- Ruin the effectiveness of detergents and soap
- May damage the plumbing system of your house
- Requires more energy to heat water
But hard water isn’t exactly perceived or proven to be as dangerous as such. These issues are why people opt for soft water because it removes hard ions from the water and makes it gentle and smooth. Click here to learn about the latest water softeners on the market.
However, like hard water, soft water has issues of its own.
1. Health-Preserving Minerals are Eradicated
In excess, magnesium and calcium can be bad for us, but not necessarily all of it. That’s because people pay a good chunk of money to drink effervescent Italian mineral waters from green glass bottles. Some of those minerals not only give the water a certain quality but also supply it with a certain amount of health benefits.
Moreover, some studies show that people typically get over 5-20% of their daily magnesium and calcium intake from drinking water. While it might seem normal, but when it comes to too much shortage of magnesium and a generalized mineral imbalance, getting rid of this mineral entirely is certainly a bad idea.
In fact, various large-scale studies show that hard water has an inverse link with cardiovascular disease. Although it does appear to be promising that hard water helps in reducing the risk for heart disease (due to the magnesium content), there aren’t any district casual relationships that have been formed and other small studies have come up with varying results.
And though more research needs to be conducted, it’s obvious that eradicating any natural sources of minerals could be pretty damaging to our overall health.
Nourishing Traditions perfectly articulates this in the following:
“The evidence states that hard water is rich in mineral ions, which provides great value in the overall promotion of good health. According to a number of studies, the rate of coronary heart disease is lower in localities where hard water is available.
Areas that are known for the longevity of their local inhabitants – including Hunzaland, the Caucasus, and Vilcabamba in South America – are all watered by mineralized runoff from grinding action of high mountain glaciers.”
2. A Burden to the Environment
Generally, water softening systems release a significant amount of corrosive salt brine and sodium into municipal sewer lines, which makes it harder for sanitation departments to both clean as well as recycle the water. In these areas where there’s lots of agriculture in need of irrigation, this is a serious dilemma.
Because of this, states like California and Texas, along with others, have passed legislation that bans these systems, with over 25 communities in the state of California have already banned or restricted the use of water softeners.
What’s more, is that most traditional water softeners use a backwashing filtration system that results in thousands of gallons of water being wasted annually.
3. Poor Water Quality
At the moment, it’s yet to be determined whether the amount of sodium (or potassium) that are released into traditionally softened water is even disastrous to human health.
There are some experts who advise against it and there are others who believe that there’s no proof that large enough quantities of softened water cause any real issue.
However, most do agree that people should avoid using softened water to water their plants and lawn as it contains harsh sodium content. And while people seem to typically enjoy the smooth feel of softened water when taking a bath, others tend to find it slimy and hard to rinse with – something that is difficult to control.