Reusable H2O Capsule water bottles are relatively clean on their own, however, if used frequently without being properly washed, things can quickly become frightening. According to mLab P & K testing, reusable water bottles carry a variety of germs. Here's a quick rundown of the results:
Without regular cleaning, reusable water bottles can have 300,000 colonies forming units per square centimeter (CFU/sq cm). The average CFU/sq cm in your pet's water bowl is 43,000. Yikes! You're better off drinking water from your pet’s bowl if you don't have time to clean your reusable water bottle.
The most dangerous germs, known as gram-negative rods, were discovered in squeeze top plastic bottles, among which E. Coli is one.
All bottles tested had more germ colony-forming units than pet bowls, kitchen sinks, and cutting boards.
If those statistics don't persuade you that the average reusable water bottle is filthy, nothing will. For the rest of us, who are understandably alarmed by these figures, there are some steps you can take to reduce your exposure to harmful germs that may have accumulated in your water bottle.
How Often do You Need To Clean Your Reusable Water Bottle?
It has already been established that using a reusable half-gallon water bottle is beneficial to the environment due to the amount of plastic saved. And you've probably figured out that it's good for your wallet because you're not constantly spending money on bottled drinks. However, if you do not clean your reusable water bottle regularly, it may be harmful to your health. Those who haven't washed their bottle in a while should do so right away.
Dr. Celeste Donato, Ph.D., a microbiologist and senior research officer at Murdoch Children's Research Institute, recommends regularly cleaning your water bottle. I understand what you're thinking: but it's just water. While this is true, the problem isn't the water in your water bottle; it's the fact that you put your mouth to it several times a day to drink.
Dr. Donato tells Bustle, "Your mouth can contain viruses and bacteria that can enter your water bottle as you drink and backwash from your mouth goes back into the bottle or from saliva around the rim." "Most of our bacteria and viruses will not make you sick, but in some cases, they will." She also warns that you're more likely to get sick or spread bacteria if you share your water bottle with others and don't wash it.
Even if you're an expert at brushing your teeth, bacteria in your mouth and saliva remain after you've finished drinking. According to the Journal of Microbiology, over 700 different strains of bacteria live in your mouth. According to Dr. Donato, many bacteria spread just by touching your water bottle.
"Throughout the day, you touch many different surfaces, some of which may be pretty gross, such as handrails on public transportation and door handles in public restrooms, picking up bacteria and viruses on your hands," Dr. Donato says. "These germs can be transferred to your water bottle and ingested, particularly if you are touching the pull top on your bottle, which you will then drink directly from." And the bacteria on your water bottle lingers and grows every day until you properly wash it. Grossed out yet?
It's also important to remember where you take your one-gallon water bottle, such as the gym. This means that your bottle is being exposed to all of the bacteria in the air as you and others sweat.
A 2018 study conducted in Brazil and published in the Journal of Exercise Physiology used 30 shaker bottles given to gym-goers to investigate this. After examining the subjects ' water bottles post their gym session, the study discovered 25 water bottles with bacteria growth, including E. Coli!!
But don't worry. You can always learn if you've never been one to wash your bottle and don't know how exactly to clean your reusable water bottle. It's easy to do, but you're going to have to do more than just rinse it out with water.
One way to clean your reusable water bottle is by emptying it at the end of the day, pouring in warm water, adding in a few drops of dish soap, and shaking it around. After you do this, rinse your bottle out a few times, and it'll be good to go (just remember to clean the lid too carefully).
You can also clean your water bottle using either vinegar or bicarbonate soda. And if you're too lazy to do either of these, you always have the option to just pop it in the dishwasher at the end of the night.
It doesn't matter what cleaning method you use, so long as you use one. This way, you'll be able to take your next sip (and every sip after that) worry-free.