Little means more to new parents than the health of their new baby. The very new and fragile body of a newborn requires a great deal of care. Although many mothers opt to nurse their babies, this is not always an option with some mothers, and in this case, the formula must be provided. Most tap water will contain chlorine and fluoride, and could also contain VOCs and heavy metals.
There is a choice between making the formula from scratch, purchasing ready to drink formula, or using a powdered mix. In every case, if the water is used, it is imperative to use purified water. Infants are much more susceptible to damage from chemicals than are older children and adults, and using purified water will help to assure the health of a child.
Do not think that using bottled water will provide safe, pure water for the preparation of baby food – much-bottled water comes straight from a municipal water system, which means that it will contain fluoride. Another thing to keep in mind is that bottled water is not subject to any testing or inspection; the consumer is simply buying it on good faith.
Why Fluoride Is Harmful
Although various people have been complaining about the fluoridation of water for decades, the prestigious American Dental Association has now declared that fluoride is a poisonous substance. The most obvious result of fluoridation is a condition called fluorosis, whereby the teeth are eaten away by fluoride. The effect will be most pronounced when infants consume water that contains this substance.
In addition to causing fluorosis, fluoride has also been linked with other potentially serious health problems. Fluoride can influence the development of the brain and central nervous system and has been linked by some to a lower IQ in children. Unfortunately, these effects are only the tip of the iceberg and fluoride has also been linked to kidney damage, bone cancer, and harm to the thyroid gland.
Chlorine Is Problematic, Also
There is a valid reason for adding chlorine to drinking water, and that is to kill off bacteria and viruses that may be present. Municipal water supplies come from groundwater; reservoirs, rivers, and lakes all provide water for cities and towns. However, these bodies of water can be badly contaminated, and the water must be safe for humans to drink.
Waterborne illnesses have impacted hundreds of millions of people over time, and chlorine has provided a way to remove most of the risk. Unfortunately, chlorine itself presents a risk. Chlorine increases the possibility of several kinds of cancer, including bladder and colon. Exposing an infant to chlorine, while the immune system is still fragile, might well leave the child open to disease later in life.
Chlorine has also been implicated in cardiovascular disease and seems to contribute to the development of plaque.
Safe Water for Infant Formula
Fortunately, there is a way to prepare infant formula that will be safe for the baby to drink, and that is by using an appropriate filter system. Water filters come in a wide range of types – some will only remove bad smells and colors, while others might take care of bacteria. When choosing a water filter for the safe preparation of formula, care must be taken to check that the filter does remove both chlorine and fluoride.
Providing safe water not only for the baby but for the whole family is easy when the proper filter is installed. Filters that will remove chlorine, fluoride and a whole witch’s brew of contaminants are available as countertop models or under sink filters if space is short on the counter.
Whole house water purifying systems are also available that will provide safe water for every outlet in the home. The advantage to these systems is that no one will be exposed to chlorine or fluoride while bathing, and there will be no inhalation of chlorine gas.