Side Effects of Drinking Water in Plastic Bottles: The Scary Truth

Side Effects of Drinking Water in Plastic Bottles

One twist of the water bottle cap can produce 500 microplastics, according to one study(1).  Another study says that one liter of plastic bottled water contains a quarter million pieces of nanoplastic(2). 

From baby’s diaper covers to food wrappers, plastic has become an important part of the world. They are ruling the market. It is so sad to see that we are introducing plastics to babies from day 1 in the form of feeding bottles. And the cycle continues. 

Plastic is living with us in one form or the other. The most common one is water bottles. But have you ever sat back and thought about what could be the side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles? If not, get ready for the ugly truth about colorful attractive plastic bottles that are ruling our lives. 

Key Takeaways

  1. Brief history of plastic water bottles 
  2. The side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles
  3. Alternatives to plastic water bottles

Plastic Bottles- What led to the rise and popularity? 

Introduced in the 19th century for instant hydration and convenience, plastic water bottles have a rich history. Let us blame Leo Beakland who produced something called Bakelite (a synthetic plastic) in 1907. When heated, bakelite can be molded and shaped into different shapes. However, this was not enough to make plastic bottles. 

Only after World War 2, that is around 1940, Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), a new type of plastic was introduced to the world. It is lightweight, waterproof, chemical resistant, and perfect for holding liquid substances. 1970 was the year that truly revolutionized the water bottle industry when Nathaniel Wyeth made the molding of PET easy and scalable. 

Before the 19th century, people used glass water bottles, and clay containers to store and transport water. It was in the 17th century when bottled mineral water was considered healthier and hygienic than tap water. In the 2000s, when plastic bottles found their way into the market and mineral water was labeled as the most hygienic water, brands started the tap water vs. bottled water campaign. The affordability, convenience, instant hydration, and hygiene label, molded the hot plastic water bottle market. 

Side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles: 

Doctors often suggest that you drink 4 liters of water every day. But they often forget to say that the material of the water container matters the most when drinking water. No matter how many liters of water you drink, if you drink it from plastic bottles, you are inviting chronic illness, gut issues, hormone imbalance, and whatnot. 

Plastic is our enemy. Our here means, us, our future generations, soil, ocean, forest mother earth, sun, moon, everything. Here are all the possible side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles. 

You are not just drinking water but…

When you are drinking water from plastic bottles, you are not just drinking water. But MICROPLASTICS. Yes. They are poison for your cells, blood, and your whole system. Microplastic can mess up your whole system. From damaging your DNA system to organ dysfunction, metabolic disorder, oxidative stress, neurotoxicity, reproductive damage, respiratory problems, and metabolic disorder,  the microplastic in plastic water bottles can literally stir a storm inside your system. 

Nanoplastic is more dangerous: 

Nanoplastics, which are smaller particles (smaller than 1 micrometer) than microplastics, are extremely dangerous. Nanoplastic researcher Dr. Min(3) says, “The smaller the particle size, the more dangerous it may be”. Since they are extremely tiny, they can easily seep into your cells, and microbes, increasing the damage. Also since these are too tiny, they easily absorb harmful materials from the environment, for example, pesticides. When these penetrate inside your system, it can create adverse toxic effects. These nanoplastics also enter into your endocrine system, messing up your hormone system, affecting fetus development, chronic inflammation, etc., 

Plastic water bottles might be why you are not losing weight:

Plastic water bottles contain 10,000 plus toxins which still need to be researched. But some toxins like obesogens in plastic water bottles, promote fat accumulation, leading to weight gain. Metabolism-disrupting chemicals like bisphenols and phthalates are in plastic bottles which also promotes obesity. If you are still not losing weight even after dieting and workouts, look out for plastics in your everyday life. A recent study found that our day-to-day items like yogurt containers, milk cartons, water bottles, etc, can lead to weight gain(4)

Plastic bottles are killing our nature:

From marine life to mountains, plastic bottles are killing our animals and nature. Each plastic bottle takes painfully 1000 years to decompose(5). Those plastic water bottles that we throw on the beach can break into pieces and mix with the ocean. And these again come to haunt us in the form of seafood(6). Sea turtles that eat more than 14 pieces of plastic are at risk of early death(7). The sad part is these disposable water bottles kill 1.1 million marine animals every year. 

The disposed plastic water bottle uses fossil fuel to decompose, meaning it directly causes pollution and global warming. To add more, almost 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide is produced in the process of plastic water bottle production.

The side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles are too huge to count. The data and studies are heartbreaking to read. Killing animals, polluting our environment, and toxifying our entire body- plastic water bottles are the real pandemic. 

Alternatives to plastic water bottles:

Let’s get to the good part. As we have seen the side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles, you deserve to know the alternatives to plastic water bottles. 

  1. Ceramic Bottle
  2. Stainless Steel Bottle 
  3. Aluminum Bottle 
  4. UV-filtered water bottle 
  5. Silicone Water bottle
  6. Glass Water bottle
  7. Copper Water bottle 
  8. Titanium water bottle 

All the above water bottles are made with BPA, phthalates-free materials, making it healthy and hygienic to drink water. These materials also don't leave any aftertaste which plastic bottles have. You can stay away from chemical leaching as well. 


Plastic bottles are the new epidemic. From affecting our inner system to the disruption of the whole food chain, plastic water bottles have too much potential to destroy our world. Although it is good news that many countries are banning plastics in many industries, it is important to shed light on the side effects of drinking water in plastic bottles. People are so addicted to carrying plastic water bottles that they are not ready to leave them anytime soon. So understand the adverse effects of plastic bottles and leave them for good. 

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