Ask Glenn Meder: Should I Drink Distilled Water Every Day?

Categories: In the News.


Question: In one of your classes, you mentioned that you drink only distilled water every day. Why?

Answer: The only water that my family and I consume on a regular basis is distilled water. This is what we have done for 30 years, and it’s what we will do for the rest of our lives because I believe that the quality (purity) of water that you consume can have a significant impact on your health.

It comes down to this simple question, “Do you think you have a better chance of living a long, healthy life if you avoid consuming chemicals and toxins?” If your answer is yes, then you too should drink only distilled water.

First of all, what is “distilled” water? Actually, there is no such thing as “distilled water”. Water is water. The only difference between different types of water is how clean it is. The only difference between highly contaminated ocean water, for example, and pure rain water are the contaminants that are in the water.

The word “distilled” just describes the method by which the water was cleaned. The process of distillation is usually a very thorough and consistent way to clean water, so it’s considered the gold standard of clean water. “Filtered water”, on the other hand, can describe water that has a huge variability in the water’s purity. Filters are not nearly as effective or consistent as the process of distillation.

So now back to the question, “WHY do I consume only distilled water?”

The fact is, we live in a toxic world, and it’s only getting worse.

Think about it this way; until very recently, humans have lived in a chemical-free environment. Of course, what I am referring to are the highly-refined and very powerful synthetic chemicals that are mainly created from petroleum. The first synthetic chemical from petroleum was created only about 150 years ago. Up until that time, synthetic chemicals simply didn’t exist.

But it wasn’t until about 90 years ago that the modern petrochemical industry was born and these chemicals were mass-produced. At this time, most of our environment was still pristine. There are people still alive (perhaps your grandparents) who drank water that was still untouched by these chemicals.

Within this period of time another thing happened. The human population grew from around 1.7 billion people to over 7 billion! This is an astonishing growth rate! This 500% increase in population drove massive increases in chemical production.

Now over 60,000 different chemicals are in use today. Over 5 BILLION pounds of chemicals are used every year in the USA. These chemicals include solvents, gasoline additives, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and insecticides. By the way, the term ‘cides’ refers to chemicals that are intentionally designed to kill things. They are often made from petrochemicals because these are chemicals that are based on the carbon atom, and all life-forms are based on the carbon atom, thus they are good at attacking living organisms.

These chemicals are widespread, and are now thoroughly spread throughout every part of our environment.  Whether a chemical is burned, dumped, flushed, buried or sprayed it can find it’s way into our streams, lakes and rivers, which is where we get our drinking water.

Recently, the US Geological Survey studied 178 streams across the USA for pesticides. The study showed that every single stream contained at least one pesticide. 20% of them contained more than TEN pesticides. Note that this study was only looking for pesticides and not the countless other types of chemicals in our environment.

Within the next 25 years the human population is expected to exceed 9 billion people. Like it or not, world chemical production will only increase and our world will become more toxic.

But we shouldn’t worry, because the government is ensuring that the water coming out of our tap is safe, right?

Well, it depends upon your definition of “safe”. Seriously!

Survival WaterOne of the most important things that you must understand about water is that when the government says that the water coming from your tap is “safe”, they are using the LEGAL definition of the word “safe”, not the English language definition of the word safe (they never tell you this though).

So, when they tell you that your local tap water is safe, it still may contain dangerous chemicals! Sounds ridiculous doesn’t it? Almost deceptive even. I believe that this practice by the government is the number one reason that people are misinformed about water.

A recent article by the New York Times says this, “Only 91 contaminants are regulated by the Safe Drinking Water Act, yet more than 60,000 chemicals are used within the United States, according to Environmental Protection Agency estimates. Government and independent scientists have scrutinized thousands of those chemicals in recent decades, and identified hundreds associated with a risk of cancer and other diseases at small concentrations in drinking water, according to an analysis of government records by The New York Times.

The article then quotes Dr. Pankaj Parekh, director of the water quality division for the City of Los Angeles, “People don’t understand that just because water is technically legal, it can still present health risks”.

Modern water treatment plants were designed primarily to protect against bacteria and parasites (which is hugely important). They are simply not able, however, to provide a high level of protection against the full range of potential contaminants. Especially when you consider that only 2% of the water that is sent through the taps is consumed.

So how dangerous are these chemicals?

We know that of the 830 most common chemicals, many are associated with cancer or other diseases. The majority of chemicals however have unknown affects on our health. This brings us to another important point about water.

survival stillDo you remember the chemical spill that happened in West Virginia earlier this year? Over 10,000 gallons of MCHM leak from a neglected storage tank into West Virginia’s Elk River, just upstream from a major water intake facility. As a result, 300,000 residents were told not to drink, cook with, bathe or even touch the water. Even though this chemical was is in active production and use, there was no publicly released hazard data or evidence of it’s safety.

How can this be? This chemical is one of tens of thousands of chemicals on the market with little or no safety data. The fact is that in 1976, 62,000 chemicals were grandfathered into the TSCA, the USA’s main chemical safety law. What does grandfathering mean? It means that all of these chemicals were simply presumed to be safe by the EPA, which means that the EPA is not even able to determine whether they are dangerous unless they first provide evidence that the chemical may pose a risk. A catch-22.

Now, let’s stay on the subject of this West Virginia chemical spill. It was a huge media event and it was the top story in the news for more than a week. The inference was that this type of chemical spill was a rare event, but is it? Not in the slightest.

After the WV chemical spill, BusinessWeek reported that there were over 3,885 similar chemical spills in the U.S. in 2013! That equates to more than 10 per day in the USA.

Pause for a moment and let that sink in…

Now, let’s take it a step further. This number of 3,885 chemical spills in 2013 is based solely on self-reports of accidents from 76 publically traded companies. So how many unreported chemical spills came from the thousands of other companies? The military? Other government agencies? Twice this amount? Ten times this amount? The answer is simply that no one knows.

water filtersThe most recent example in the news is the EPA’s accidental discharge of millions of gallons of mining sludge into the Colorado River, which is the source of drinking water for a great number of Americans. Again, getting any real data on the contaminants that were released is tough, but it’s clear that this sludge contained very high amount of dangerous heavy metals, including lead, arsenic and cadmium. One test showed that the lead was 3,500 times the maximum permitted level for drinking water. What will the long-term impact be on people’s health? Again, we simply don’t know.

The fact is that we live in a toxic world. The evidence is staggering. And since the world’s population continues to increase while the developing nations of the world become wealthier and demand a higher standard of living this is a problem that is not going away any time soon. For example, in the year 2000 China had 2,000,000 cars on the road, while today they have a whooping 62,000,000 cars, vans, trucks and buses. This shows you how fast the world is changing, and our increasing demand for chemicals.

So what to do?

What it comes down to is this; YOU must do whatever you can to ensure that your family drinks the purest water possible. Don’t sit back and rely upon the government, because your standards are different from theirs. You want to protect your loved ones to the highest degree.

There are two primary technologies for purifying water; filtration and distillation.

Filtration, which includes reverse osmosis, is the most popular method because it’s cheap and because the constant replacement of filters is a good source of residual revenue for companies. There is a lot of variability in the performance of filters though. There are many different types of filters, each of which is specialized for a particular type of contaminant, so a good filter solution will include a combination of filters that is designed for your particular water analysis. For this reason, if you want to have a filter solution you should avoid the simple, mass-marketed filters and instead go to a qualified local water treatment specialist and have him design one for your water.

Distillation is recognized as the gold standard for purification, because it is certainly the best way to purify water. A good water distiller will provide broader protection against contaminants in water than filters, and this protection will be much more consistent over time. Note however, that while distillation is typically a very consistent process, there are a number of Chinese distillers on the market that use materials that should not come in contact with high-purity water.

AquaNui_Logo-borderI recommend the AquaNui Brand of water distillers, which are made by my father’s business. Before I launched the Survival Still and started my own company, I worked with my father for over 20 years. I know that they are the best distillers on the market and that they are made in the USA by an ethical, fantastic company. I think you will find them to be quite reasonably priced, and surprisingly, even the larger automatic systems are priced lower than a professionally designed filter system.

I personally use and recommend the larger size systems, and I recommend getting a pump with the system so that you can have the water delivered directly to a separate faucet on your sink. An important thing to understand is that it’s not just about drinking pure water, but rather, everything that you CONSUME should be pure. This means that soups, coffee, tea, pasta, rice, protein drinks, and especially baby formula should be made with pure water, which is why I recommend the larger sizes.

If you want to talk to someone about the AquaNui products, call the company at 402-467-9300, extension 327 and talk to Courtney Meder (my sister) who will be able to explain anything about the products and can help you choose the right option.

I am thankful that I am in the position to educate you on water contamination and steps that you can take to protect your family. If you are interested in learning more about my family’s products, please click here. Also, if you are going to purchase a product, use the coupon code 327417 in order to get a discount on your purchase.

I hope this helps you.

Glenn Meder

P.S. Full disclosure, yes I receive a small commission if you follow this link and purchase a distiller, but this commission does not affect the price that you would get the product for. Also, I would recommend these distillers even if I didn’t get a commission because they are simply the best.

About Glenn Meder

Glenn Meder is a leading expert on the topic of “water in an emergency” and has written numerous articles, has appeared on radio shows and is the founder and designer of the Survival Still, emergency water purifier.


  1. Great article Glen. I have a survival still from you. We live near the Colorado River at Yuma. We are on a community well system. I use an RO for drinking water to which I add ADYA drops to precipitate out harmful chemicals, bacteria and parasites, etc.. Just how much of the river water seeps into our well who knows? We are more than a dozen miles from the river although the agriculture fields nearby are fed by water I sure comes from the Colorado at the Imperial Dam. I haven’t gone as far as using distilled water so far. And haven’t been sickened so far. I don’t want to go overboard. In case the drought hits us I have a dehumidifier to catch water from the air as a backup. I use my Berkey to further filter the “air” water. Makes it pretty pure. I would use the ADYA drops to handle other impurities. CLR

  2. Ann Wade

    I can vouch for not only the safety of drinking only distilled water, but also for its health benefits. I learned from my father to drink a large glass of water every morning to start the day, and to drink more throughout the day, so that by the end of the day you’ve drunk around 2 litres of water. Like him, I had a tendency to develop kidney stones when drinking tap or mineral water, but it wasn’t until after a couple of painful episodes of passing kidney stones in my early 30’s that I began to drink 2 litres a day. Soon after that I discovered distilled water and bought a counter top water distiller so I could make my own. Since my parents and I started drinking distilled water we have had no further kidney stones, no arthritis or other joint pain, and my mother even cleared up a persistent stomach ulcer when she started drinking distilled water. People often remark on how young we all look for our ages – I am nearly 65, my mother is 90 and my father is just about to turn 98. Neither one of my parents uses a walking stick and they walk regularly. They also both still have their faculties. I am convinced their good health and longevity is due to their plant-rich diet and drinking pure distilled water.

    I would like to dispute those who say you need minerals in your drinking water. Some say distilled water will strip minerals out of your body. A few even claim that drinking distilled water leads to an early death! (This claim has been widely spread by the sellers of ineffective water gadgets who see water distillers as their biggest competition.) Obviously that has not been my family’s experience. Anyone who eats will have the remains of their last meal in their stomach when they drink distilled water – a meal which will likely have more minerals in it than any mineral water does. So even if pure water was undesirable in some way, as soon as it reaches your stomach, it mixes with those minerals and is no longer pure, mineral-free water. In this way distilled water helps deliver those minerals to your cells, and it also carries away impurities that your cells have rejected – impurities that might otherwise end up causing problems in your joints or organs.

    My elderly parents are living proof that distilled water leads to good health, not an early death.

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