Why does reverse osmosis water need remineralization?

TL:DR – Minerals are needed for digestion and proper cellular hydration

As you look back over the history of water filtration, you’ll find in many ways we’re our own worst enemy. The initial reason for filtration was to rid the ground water of biological contaminants. Mostly human and animal waste. Ceramic filtration was the earliest method, utilized in England in the early 1800s.

Chemical applications (ie chlorine) came later that same century, and quickly gained widespread use as a disinfectant in water mains and supply systems.

More chemicals and their biproducts followed in the years to come.

Today we have a situation where it isn’t just biological contaminants that need removal, but man made toxins as well. Our municipal and rural water supplies are a witch’s brew of chemicals like chlorine, chloramines, fluoride, lead leaching from old pipes and an ever-growing list of pharmaceuticals and agricultural runoff.

Consequently, we need more advanced filtration methods.

Reverse osmosis (RO) membranes were first discovered in 1959. Their size and incredible filtration abilities quickly resulted in their incorporation into household filtration systems, really picking up steam as the 1980s rolled on.

The benefits of RO are significant and the spectrum of toxins they eliminate are nearly incomparable, although advanced ceramics (like we utilize in our PLUS systems) are closing that gap.

But ROs have 1 major shortcoming. They don’t discriminate what they filter. The good minerals we need in our water are flushed down the waste line right along with the toxins. In the last 10-15 years, the awareness of remineralizing RO water has grown. Doctors and health professionals who used to preach RO (or distilled) water thinking clean was the only priority have realized clean is only half of the equation for healthy water.

Minerals in our water are needed to maximize hydration, improve digestion, and keep other biological processes functioning correctly.

It’s actually a bit ironic as we now know that cells absorb water via a very similar process used by RO membranes. They need minerals (and their respective electrical charges) to flow through aquaporin channels. Without that correct balance of minerals inside and out, water won’t flow into the cell and waste won’t flow out as efficiently.

Figure 1 – Aquaproin Channel - By Opossum58, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=131137078

As understanding of this has hit more of the mainstream, you now find numerous mineral or remineralization cartridges available for RO systems. But, and this is important, not all cartridges are made the same or provide the same benefits.

Some, mostly the very low-cost options, are not made for you. They allow companies to market their products, but as with most things, you get what you pay for. A much better option is available, which we detail here.

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