What is the best water? 

Based on this most frequent question I get from podcast listeners, I put together the ultimate guide to drinking and bathing water.

Do yourself a favor and hang on to this information, and pass it on to as many people as you can. It’s taken me ages to put this together. 

Also, please note that this is just my opinion, based on 20+ years of research and experience. However I am not a scientist, or a doctor. But I have interviewed a couple dozen of them, and they all tend to agree with my approach.

My opinions on water (and health in general) are based on this fundamental principle: Follow the laws of nature, and use common sense. 

Here are few of the reasons for which I have arrived at the recommendations to follow:

  • Water is the #1 nutrient you need to stay alive, after oxygen. It should be something you take very seriously, as it is the true foundation of your health. Think of your body as a fish tank. It pretty much is. What’s more important in a fish tank, the food you poor into it, or the quality and cleanliness of the water? Correct answer: The water.
  • Your blood, lymphatic fluid, reproductive fluids, mucus, tears, saliva, and virtually every liquid in your body are made of water.
  • Why would you use sterile, dead water that you bought from the government (tap water) to build your body’s fluids? Do you really want to cry tears of joy or sadness that you bought from The State? Or if you are a man, do you want to conceive a child with sperm swimming in chemical-laden seminal fluid? If you’re a woman, would you like your unborn child to begin its life swimming in amniotic fluid made of toxic water? Call me crazy, but to me, that is really weird. 
  • Your body and brain are made of approximately 70-90% water. Why would you try to ‘save money’ on the one substance that the vast majority of your body mass is made of? Stop taking expensive supplements if you want to save money.
  • Tap water is dead water, even if it’s free of chemicals. In a city like Los Angeles, the tap water you are drinking has literally been swallowed by thousands of people, then peed and/or shat into a toilet, collected, cleaned, and pumped right back into your tap. Yes, really. HERE'S A PODCAST I DID ABOUT IT.
  • The vast majority of water filters are worthless trash, and do not remove most of the chemicals that harm you. A Britta filter? Dude, seriously. No. Just no.
  • The filters that do take out all of the chemicals, also take out everything good in the water. See RO and distilled, below.
  • Reverse osmosis, and distilled water is not water. Its pharmaceutical, lab-grade H2O. Real water is alive. RO and distilled water are not natural. Your body does not recognize processed water, just like it doesn’t recognize processed food. There are some tactics that can be used to bring highly processed water like this ‘back to life’, such as adding a pinch of sea salt to your storage container, 5-gallon bottles etc but it’s difficult to re-create nature’s miracles. 
  • Bottled water is dead water, due to ozone and UV zapping, which some states law require for disinfection. Nothing can grow in bottled water. The DNA is scrambled. It has no life force. Put any and all bottled or filtered tap water outside in the sun with oxygen and light and nothing will grow in it. No algae = no life. It’s worth mentioning that while I would prefer my spring water without algae, in most cases it would be harmless. If you’ve ever eaten spirulina or chlorella, you’ve survived high-dose algae ingestion already. 
  • Any water in plastic (except non-toxic plastics) is by nature toxic to varying degrees. Plastic and chemicals from plastic leech into bottled water over time, and end up polluting your body in a multitude of ways. Of course in emergencies (such as while on airplanes) I drink Evian, or Fiji because it’s fairly clean and comes in a hard plastic bottle, which leeches less plastic than the cheap, thin, soft plastic bottles. Plastic water bottles also reek complete havoc on our oceans, and environment. 
  • Most cheap, commodity bottled water labeled as ‘spring water’ is filtered tap water. Companies like Pepsi Co, and Coca Cola own the really crappy water companies like Dasani, Aquafina, and Poland Spring. These all suck.
  • As for alkaline water machines and the like: Been there done that. I’m not a fan. You’re still drinking dead, poorly filtered tap water in most cases. Not to mention, your digestive system is slightly acidic by design, in order to digest solid food. If you are concerned about your body’s PH, eat more greens and adopt a deep breath work practice. 

My recommended solutions:

1st choice: Spring water that has not been touched by man, ever. True spring water is what’s known as ‘Primary Water’. This is water that has never been through the hydrological cycle, and thus never exposed to industrial-age contamination. Learn more about Primary Water here in this video. 

Harvest your own wild spring water, preferably sourced from a high elevation (the top of a tall mountain). Except for www.livespringwater.com, and www.tourmalinespring.com I have never seen unprocessed spring water sold commercially, due to strict statewide sanitation laws, and the commercial need for retail shelf-stability. So go get your own if you can. Make sure its a spring that people use a lot without reports of anyone picking up bugs. If you’re paranoid, just send a sample to a lab to test for contaminants and harmful bacteria. My view is that the 100’s or 1000’s of feet of rocks and earth that spring water must travel through to reach the surface of the earth are a much more reliable filter than anything you can fit under your sink. And I have never, ever gotten sick as a result of drinking spring water. Even from springs that the locals told me were ‘contaminated’. That said, I obviously do not recommend drinking from ‘tainted’ springs. *Note: do not ever drink from streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, or any body of water above ground.

If you want to be badass and go harvest your own natural, untouched, wild spring water you might find a local spring here. It’s a very fun and rewarding adventure, on so many levels. Whenever I travel, one of the first things I do is find local springs and go load up on water. In California, buy yourself empty glass bottles to carry and store your water here. Use the code LIFESTYLIST and save yourself 15% off bottles. Outside of California you can find 3 or 5 gallon glass carboys (big-ass bottles) at companies that sell home brewing supplies, like this one.

If you’re paranoid about drinking natural water directly from mother earth, get your local spring water lab-tested. Here are a few labs to choose from. Send them a sample, get your source cleared, then chug freely. Here is a lab I’ve used in the past.

Here’s a video of me collecting my own spring water in the mountains, which I’ve been doing since I was 4-5 years old. It hasn’t killed me, or made me sick yet. And I’ve drank from over 100 springs. You can see tons of them on my Instagram feed.

If you’re not the adventurous type, and you live in most areas of California, consider yourself extremely lucky. You can order home delivery of the most amazing spring water ever, from www.LiveSpringWater.com. Check out their lab tests right on their site. This water is pristine, so delicious, and clean AF. This is the only water I drink at home in LA, unless I go collect my own, which I do about half of the time. I spend around $130 per month on home delivery, living alone, and using this water for any and all food or drink preparation. 

Bonus: Podcast listener discount at www.LiveSpringWater.com

  • Save 15% off merchandise: glass orbs, glass globes, organic cotton carrying bags, counter stands, floor stands, dispensers, and empty jugs. 
  • Save 27% off first-time water deliveries
  • Use Discount Code: LIFESTYLIST

2nd Choice: Bottled spring water in glass. Most commercial drinking water labeled as “spring water” is actually drilled and pumped out of aquifers, which are essentially wells. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it’s good to know the difference. 

If you live outside of California, check out Mountain Valley. They deliver 2.5 and 5 gallon glass bottles in many major US cities. However, if you’re a woman that lives without a man around the house, I strongly advise that you do not order 5-gallon bottles for delivery. They are really, really heavy, and as a result, potentially dangerous to manage. Stick to the 2.5-gallon bottles.

Here are a few of my personal favorite commercial spring water brands below for starters, but I’d suggest that do some of your own research, to find a local company to deliver to your home if possible. A few of these might deliver in your area via their website or Amazon, or at least be available for purchase at a local store. 

Tourmaline Spring (#1 bottled water. Not processed, packaged in safe, non-toxic plastic bottles)
Starkey
Saratoga
Castle Rock
Aqua Panna
Eldorado
Simpson Spring
Berrington (UK)
Minton (UK)
Stream Farm (UK)

Third Choice: If you insist on filtering your tap water and drinking from the sink, this PristineHydro under-counter filter is the only home use filter I would personally ever consider using. (Unless I was in a post-apocalyptic, emergency situation, in which case I would use a portable, countertop Berkey Filter) However, for a an under sink system, PristineHydro is the only company I would trust. They understand the science of ‘living water, and are the only filtration system that re-vitalizes water through a vortex, and re-mineralizes it with the healthiest bio-available minerals.These filters are not cheap. They cost a couple grand. Get over it. Hospitals and doctors that you will no doubt be forced to pay later as a result of drinking toxic water will be much more expensive, trust me. Find a way to work it out. Cancel cable. Eat out less. Drive a cheaper car. Your water is not the piece of your diet on which you want to be a cheap-ass. Remember, it’s the foundation of your entire health strategy. 

Fourth Choice: There is no fourth choice, except in an emergency. Refer back to choices one, two, and three. 

Shower and bath water: Showering or bathing in tap water is the same or worse than drinking it. If you take hot showers, you are literally chillin' in a toxic gas chamber 10-20 min per day. Not good. While we’re at it, do not ever use steam rooms! This is an extremely self-destructive practice, disguised as a healthy, relaxing spa treatment. You do not want to breath tap water vapor. Just trust me. (Some high-end gyms do filter the water used in steam rooms, so talk to management to find out)

It’s crucial to filter your bathing water. Especially if you have kids! Do not bath or shower your babies or kids in tap water. Their little immune systems have a hard enough time combating the chemical burden of modern life already. Don’t tax them further if you can help it. No guilt - just awareness. 

If you live in an apartment: The best you can do is filter the water at the source. Get the best shower filter on the market here. None of the bath filters on the market excite me too much, but here is a decent one which is way bette than not using one at all. 

If you live in a house: Just keep it simple and filter the entire house. Here is where you’ll find the best whole-house units I have discovered. But I still would not use this water for my primary drinking water. I would use this for cooking, coffee, smoothies etc. For drinking water, I would still follow choices one, two, or three. 

Want to further educate yourself on water, for free? Follow the simple steps below to help understand how I have arrived at my suggested water strategy.

Step 1: Listen to my complete Water Wars Trilogy Life Stylist Podcast series:

Episode One: Daniel Vitalis
Episode Two: Seth Leaf Pruzansky (Tourmaline Spring)
Episode Three: Mukhunde Singh (Live Spring Water)

Step 2: In-depth Listen to Episode #14 of The Life Stylist Podcast: 'What’s In Your Water?' 

Step 3Listen to this episode of The Rewild Yourself Podcast about water

Step 4Read this book about water

Step 5Watch this video about water

Enjoy upgrading your water. It is the core of all life on earth, and the most crucial, and fundamental foundation of any discerning person's health strategy. 

Luke

PS: Please forward and share this link/document with as many people as possible.