This is a habit adopted by a large number of people and yet it could not be worse. Find out why you shouldn’t refill a plastic water bottle after you’ve emptied it. This gesture can expose you to dangers for your health!
When we finish our plastic water bottle, we may be tempted to refill it. Only, this gesture can harm our body. One thing is certain: you won’t do this again when you know what happens when you adopt this habit.
Hot days require us to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Only, if you are one of those people who reuse water bottles, you could harm your health. This is because disposable plastic bottles can contain toxic compounds and harmful bacteria.
Types of plastic bottles
Most water bottle packaging displays a number printed inside a triangle to indicate what type of plastic it is. This number can also help you determine how safe it is to reuse it.
Here are three of the most common types of plastic found in water bottles.
Polyethylene terephthalate (PETE or PET):
If you notice a “1” on your bottle, it means polyethylene terephthalate. This lightweight plastic is useful for water bottles and containers like sauce bottles, nut butter containers, and other food packaging.
High Density Polyethylene (HDPE):
If your bottle shows a “2”, the plastic is high-density polyethylene (HDPE). HDPE is a more robust and durable plastic. This makes it a good material for detergent bottles, soap bottles and 3.5 liter liquid containers.
The “7” is the identification code for plastic materials that do not fit into any other category. Some water bottles in this category may contain Bisphenol A, otherwise known as BPA. This is a chemical that has been linked to disruptions in the endocrine system, which is responsible for regulating hormones. Many people avoid products containing BPA due to their potential impact on hormonal balance.
A common concern with reusing bottled water is chemical leaching. This is when the chemicals in the plastic mix with the liquid you put inside. But with the right storage and the right kind of plastic, that’s normally not a problem with plastic bottles.
But when these types of plastics are stored at extremely high temperatures, there is a risk of leaching a chemical called antimony. Yet the risks of chemical leaching are low when you store the bottles properly. It is best to store these bottles at room temperature and out of direct sunlight to minimize all of these risks.
Plastic bottles and the composition of bacteria
Plastic bottles can harbor harmful bacteria, which is why most manufacturers recommend using them only once. Bacterial growth in water bottles is a much bigger concern than chemical leaching.
Bacterial growth can occur quickly from ordinary use of touching your mouth to your bottle. Even drinks left at room temperature can grow bacteria throughout the day. It’s best to reuse plastic water bottles and wash them thoroughly as germs spread quickly.
These chemicals can have a negative effect on hormonal balance, but the potential dangers of plastic water bottles don’t stop there.
To stay hydrated safely, avoid reusing disposable bottles. It is better to recycle them after drinking or to buy a BPA-free plastic bottle or a glass bottle.
Read also Here’s why it’s important to stop leaving water bottles lying around in the car
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