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Is Shower Water Safe to Drink?

Is It Safe to Drink From the Shower Head?

If you're like me, your days are jam-packed with family responsibilities, errands, work, and exercise, so finding ways to save time whenever possible is always helpful. Recently a friend of mine told me that since she needs to rehydrate after sweating it out, and she also needs to shower, she drinks from the shower head to save time. I immediately thought, "Interesting time saver, but a good idea?"

If you guzzle from the shower head, stop! To find out why keep reading.

Not only have studies found that shower heads are breeding grounds for disease-causing bacteria, but the actual hot water may not be safe to drink. Why? The hot water tank that holds the water for your shower can be a place where bacteria grows. The elevated temperature affects the chlorine in your water, so it may not able to inhibit the growth of bacteria. Hot water also tends to corrode pipes more quickly than cold water, so you may end up drinking lead or dissolved metals when you sip from the shower head. Pretty gross, huh?

If you absolutely can't break free from this habit, it's best to have the water tested to make sure it's safe to drink. This is easy if you shower at home post-workout, but not so easy if you shower at the gym. Instead of taking any chances, bring a water bottle in the shower with you and chug from that.

Image Source: Getty
Join The Conversation
danakscully64 danakscully64 7 years
I just moved to Southeast Texas, I wouldn't drink the water from the kitchen sink, let alone with shower. Bleh. Even filtered it's terrible (hard and high alkalinity). In California it didn't seem too bad though.
GreenGrass GreenGrass 7 years
If the water isn't safe from the shower why is it safe from the kitchen faucet? The same style of pipes are used to get water from the same hot water heater that is used for the bath.
ElectroPopTart ElectroPopTart 7 years
i NEVER thought of the grossness that would be on the shower head! I do this ALL the time...ewwww
Spectra Spectra 7 years
Why would you DO that? Wouldn't it be warm? Gross. Listeria and certain fungi live on faucet heads/shower heads...they're fairly innocuous, but if you're DRINKING from the shower, you could get something nasty.
Pistil Pistil 7 years
Seems like a weird habit to me... how much time does it take to grab a bottle or glass of water out of the shower?
chillchic chillchic 7 years
I use a shower filter but I still don't drink the water. Why the heck would anyone do that?
michlny michlny 7 years
I know my friend uses a filter for her shower head...I think I will get one too!
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
Anon, I think it's the same concept as how it's ok to swim in the pool or the ocean, but I would never drink a tall glass of pool or ocean water. I don't think Fit is saying that shower water is going to kill you, but that it's somewhat dirty and there's no reason to drink it when you could just as easily drink some cold tap water.
ckeller825 ckeller825 7 years
sick! who drinks from the shower head? I could never.
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