Author: UptickAdmin

How to Choose the Best Reusable Water Bottle for You

There are lots of reusable water bottle options out there, so if you’ve been putting off getting one, there’s no excuse! Reusable water bottles are environmentally friendly, convenient for you, and will save you money in the long run. Choosing one will depend on what your day-to-day looks like, what activities you participate in, and how you want to stay hydrated. With glass, plastic, collapsible, rigid, one-handed drinking, integrated filter bottles, leak-proof bottles, and so many more, we can help you choose the right one.

Why Buy One?

Producing one reusable water bottle takes far fewer resources and creates less pollution than the production of standard bottled water. Each time you refill your bottle, you’re reducing the need for the mass production of disposable plastic bottles! You’ll be saving money, too, in a relatively short amount of time.

Things to Consider

The first thing you need to consider when choosing your reusable water bottle is how you’ll be using it! Answering this question will quickly narrow down your choices. Are you getting a water bottle for camping trips? For yoga class? To sit on your desk? To travel with you in a backpack? Figuring out what features are important to you will make your decision easy.

Collapsible vs. Rigid Water Bottles

Collapsible bottles are great when space is limited, or you’re trying to pack light! When they’re empty they can roll up, and some have stylish new designs that allow them to condense into themselves. These are very useful when traveling, and make great backup water bottles for multi-day hikes and camping.

Rigid water bottles, or bottles that keep their shape, are easier to drink from and are typically more durable. They also insulate better than most collapsible bottles, so your drinks will stay hotter or colder longer!

How You Want to Drink

The most basic function of your water bottle is to hydrate you on the go. So take some time to think about what would be easiest for you to drink from! This means choosing the right lid type. A lot of water bottles offer multiple lid types, so you can buy your preference for almost any brand or style.

You can choose between wide mouth and narrow mouth bottles that usually come with basic screw caps, although for most people the screw cap is not the most convenient option out there. You can look at bottles with flip caps, straw lids, sport caps, etc. and figure out what you like the best. This decision may seem superficial, but it’s very important! You’ll drink much more water with an easily accessible lid.

Materials

The standard material for reusable water bottles is plastic, but over the years more sustainable options have come around. The benefit of plastic water bottles is variety—you can get them in any shape or color, they’re cheaper, and they’re very lightweight. If you’re going on a backpacking or camping trip, a plastic water bottle is a good option. There’s very little risk of it breaking, and it won’t add a lot of extra weight.

If you do go with a plastic water bottle, make sure to take some precautions to protect yourself.

  • Don’t microwave it
  • Don’t use it for hot liquids
  • Hand wash instead of using the dishwasher
  • Don’t leave it out in the sun
  • Toss it if the inside becomes scratched or discolored

If you want something durable and more environmentally friendly, go with glass or stainless steel. Many glass bottles come with silicone sleeves, so they’re more resilient when dropped or bumped. Water tastes great in glass bottles, and most stainless steel or metal bottles no longer have that metallic taste we hate.
Once you choose a reusable water bottle, fill it with the purest water possible! Contact Water Way today.

What Kind of Water is Best for Your Plants?

Different kinds of water interact with and affect our bodies differently, and the same is true for different kinds of water and your plants! While some plants are resilient to most kinds of water, a lot of plants are greatly affected by the kind of water you use.

What Should You Water Your Plants With?

First thing’s first—tap water can be extremely dangerous to your plants’ health and how much or how quickly they grow. While watering your yard plants with bottled water may be impractical, using bottled spring water for your indoor plants will make a big difference for them.

To give your plants the absolute best, rainwater and bottled spring water are your best options. Any water containing sugar or salt will hurt them!

What About Distilled Water?

While distilled water won’t actually harm your plants, you will notice that your plants won’t grow as quickly or as tall as plants watered with rainwater or bottled spring water. Some people have also suggested adding Epsom salts to grow plants faster, though there’s no proof that this helps your plants either.

Spring water contains natural minerals that are essential for optimal growth in your plants. Distilled water will keep your plants alive, but won’t add any nutrients to help them thrive.

What About Adding Nutrients?

Too many people have believed for too long that adding sugar or salt to plant water will cause them to grow faster and bigger. This is mostly common with roses, but people add things to their plant water all the time thinking it will help them. Adding these things to your water will only hinder their growth, and can actually cause rotting. However, plant nutrition sticks, powders, or liquids to your purified water can really aid growth and overall health as they are designed to do.

But at the end of the day, purified water will give your plant the best experience—they’ll be able to easily absorb the hydration they need without having to filter anything extra. Purified water allows the plant to absorb the hydration without the need to filter anything out—this makes growing much easier for your green friends!
For the purest water, contact Water Way today!

All The Best Birmingham Waterfalls

Spring in the South has arrived—and it’s only going to get hotter from here! Now is the perfect time to take advantage of Alabama’s beautiful water and hiking trails. We’ve grouped together the best of the best and arranged them in order of how far they are from Birmingham! There’s a trip for you whether you only have an hour or a whole weekend.

Moss Rock Preserve Waterfalls

This is about as close to home as you can get! Just 20 minutes outside of Birmingham, Moss Rock Preserve has 349 protected acres in Hoover, Alabama. Along one five-mile trail, you’ll come across several waterfalls, including the tumbling waters of Hurricane Branch. There are lots of trails, climbing, and scenic views. For the best waterfall experience, take your trip after a heavy rain!

Peavine Falls

Just 10 minutes farther from Birmingham than Moss Rock is Peavine Falls, a 65-foot spring-fed waterfall located inside Oak Mountain State Park. This waterfall is ideal for avid hikers who don’t mind a bit of a climb. While many different trails will lead you to the falls, take Peavine Falls Trail for the fastest route. You’ll find the beautiful falls, as well as a clear spot to cool off after the challenging hike.

Noccalula Falls

An hour and 10 minutes outside of Birmingham, Noccalula Falls is an ideal destination for outdoor lovers and history buffs alike! You’ll find a 90-foot waterfall there, surrounded by Cherokee legend. If you’re an experienced hiker, you can head down the trails into the ravine to explore the nearby caves behind the falls. There you can find historic carvings left behind by Civil War soldiers. On your way in or out, don’t forget to visit the charming pioneer village and see the historic covered bridge.

Cheaha Falls

An hour and 20 minutes away, you’ll find Cheaha Falls inside of Talladega National Forest. This forest is home to Alabama’s tallest mountain, Mount Cheaha! Water flows down the mountain in Cheaha Creek, and 30 feet of water spills from rocks along Chinnabee Silent Trail to form Cheaha Falls. This beautiful sight is an easy three-quarter-mile hike from the trail’s parking lot on the Talladega Scenic Byway. You can also stop by Devil’s Den and High Falls while you’re there!

Upper Caney Creek Falls

Just 10 minutes farther away from Birmingham than Cheaha Falls, Upper Caney Creek Falls is outside the Sipsey Wilderness in Double Springs. This is considered an absolute must-see waterfall, so it’s worth the three-mile hike! At the end, you’ll find beautiful falls, moss-covered rocks, and plenty of evergreen trees—it’s especially lush after a heavy rain. There’s even a great swimming hole at the bottom of the falls.

Dismals Canyon Falls

An hour and 45 minutes outside of Birmingham, Dismals Canyon Falls is located in the Appalachian foothills of Franklin County. You can experience two waterfalls, as well as some of the most unique terrain in the state—the temperature can sometimes be 14 degrees below average here! A 1.5-mile hike will take you on a tour through the canyon, past both Rainbow Falls and Secret Falls, and features a plethora of unique plants. As a privately owned conservatory, they do charge an admission fee, but they offer discounts for kids, seniors, groups, and tours. They’ll also give you a discount if you stay overnight!

DeSoto Falls

For one of Alabama’s most famous waterfalls, you only have to drive an hour and 48 minutes. DeSoto Falls tumble 100 feet over the beautiful gorge. A short, paved walk will take you to the falls overlook, and if you continue down a flight of stairs, you’ll get a breathtaking view of the main waterfall. There are several smaller waterfalls to see, as well as an array of outdoor activities including kayaking, fishing, and wildflower expeditions.

Little River Falls

Just two hours away from Birmingham, Little River Falls is a 45-foot waterfall on the top of Lookout Mountain. This is considered one of Alabama’s most accessible waterfalls, and it flows year-round. It’s the start of Little River Canyon and a part of the Little River Canyon National Preserve. You’ll also find shaded picnic tables and a beautiful swimming hole!

Sipsey Wilderness Waterfalls

Nicknamed the “land of 1,000 waterfalls,” if you want to more than one waterfall, this is the place for you. Just two hours away from Birmingham, you’ll find amazing hiking and camping among 25,000 protected acres of forested canyons, ravines, and sandstone cliffs and formations. Here you can see Kinlock Falls, Fall Creek Falls, Turkey Foot Falls, Feather Haws Falls, and many more.
And if you need clean water for your trek, contact the team at Water Way today.

Does Good Hydration Really Boost Happiness?

You’ve probably heard the same number for years—8 cups of water a day. Many experts have said that that number of cups is outdated, but recent studies have shown how accurate it really is. It’s important to know the facts, because hydration affects more than just your physical health—your mental clarity and happiness are also at stake! Read on.

IOM Study

According to the IOM, women over 19 need 2.7 liters of total fluid per day (that’s over 11 cups) while men over 19 need 3.7 (over 15 cups). About 20% of your daily fluid comes through food, but that still leaves 8-12 cups based on the IOM’s guidelines. Most Americans drink about 2 liters of total beverages per day, but less than ¼ of that comes from water. While non-water drinks like sodas and sweet tea can count toward your fluid needs, they also contain empty calories, or calories not accompanied by valuable nutrients, and contribute to weight gain.

University of Connecticut Study

According to a new study done by the University of Connecticut’s Human Performance Laboratory, even mild dehydration—or 1.5% loss in normal fluid volume—can actually alter your energy level and your mood.

In this study, 25 women and 26 men were tested, each of them healthy and typically exercising anywhere from 30-60 minutes every day. There were three separate evaluations, each 28 days apart, where each subject was put through a series of tests that measured things like reaction time, learning, reasoning, memory, and concentration. These results were compared with a separate series of tests the subjects took when they were dehydrated.

The women involved in the study were found to feel fatigued, get headaches, have trouble concentrating, and held the perception that the tasks they were being asked to do were more challenging than they were before. Similar results were found with the men in the study, although they suffered more issues with memory and less issues with mood changes than the women.

The study also found that, on average, people don’t feel thirsty until after they’ve already become 1-2% dehydrated. Essentially, if you feel thirsty, you’re probably already suffering from these cognitive effects of dehydration.

Hydration and Happiness: Conclusion

If you notice yourself feeling tired, run down, stressed, foggy, etc. there’s a good chance you’re consistently dehydrated. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, try tracking your water intake for a few days. Take note of your symptoms, your moods, etc. Then, try increasing your water intake, and odds are, you’ll notice incredible differences in all of those areas.
For more information and tips on staying hydrated, contact Water Way today!

What Happens When You Replace Soda with Water?

It’s no secret that water is the healthiest beverage option out there—no calories, no sugar, just hydration. But while water only has positive benefits for you, soda has nothing for you. Nutrition experts not only recommend limiting your consumption of soda, but most advocate for avoiding it altogether as there are zero health benefits and several negative impacts.

Hydration: Soda vs. Water

Through the course of you day, you lose eight cups of water from your body to sweat and urination. If you don’t replace all of this water, you become susceptible to a lot of health issues. Headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, and dry mouth are all possible symptoms of dehydration. Most adults don’t drink the recommended amount of water each day, and experience these symptoms often.

Soda doesn’t replace any of the water you lose—in fact, because it increases your body’s production of urine, it makes dehydration worse.

One 12 ounce soda contains 45 milligrams of caffeine—that’s double the amount of caffeine in a standard cup of coffee. If you do drink soda, try to drink one extra glass of water for each can of soda you drink in a day!

Weight Loss

An average 12 ounce soda also contains about 150 calories, and almost all of them come from sugar. So, if you drink two sodas a day for a whole month, you’ll have taken in about 5 pounds of sugar and 9,000 calories just from your beverages. Cearly, over time this will lead to weight gain and all the health problems that accompany it, like fatty liver disease and metabolic syndrome. Even to a less extreme extent, you can feel sluggish and tired, impeding your daily mood and productivity.

According to a study done by the Harvard School of Public Health, diet sodas are hardly any better for you. The artificial sweeteners in them cause intense cravings for other sweet foods and drinks, and this leads to an increase in calorie and sugar intake even though the sodas don’t contribute calories themselves.

And while soda makes weight loss much more difficult, water has been proven extremely effective in promoting healthy weight. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that adults who drink a large glass of water before a meal eat about 75 calories less than those who don’t. Not to mention, water has zero calories, zero sugar, and doesn’t promote unhealthy cravings like sodas do.

Your Teeth

All the sugars and acids in soda are not kind to your teeth. The acid breaks down the enamel on your teeth, leaving them vulnerable to cavities and tooth decay. The sugar drastically increases the amount of bacteria in your mouth, and as they feed on it, they create enamel-damaging acids themselves.

All the while, water, especially tap water and special bottled water, contains fluoride which actively strengthens and protects you teeth.

Making the Change

Cutting out soda completely can be difficult—the more soda you drink, the more you crave it. So, don’t be too hard on yourself! It can take a while to wean your body off of all the sugar and caffeine. Start first by increasing your water intake without cutting down on the soda yet. You’ll feel the difference in no time. Then, once you get used to drinking more water (get ready to use the bathroom a lot) you can start cutting back on your soda drinking.

Start slow! If you drink two cans of soda a day, try drinking just one. You can also try switching to sparkling water—you’ll get the same carbonated sensation, as well as some lemon or lime flavor, without all the sugar and calories.
For more information and tips on staying hydrated, contact Water Way today.

The Best Water For Your Cup of Coffee

 

Our society has spent years perfecting the art of coffee—we know everything about different kinds of beans and how they’re roasted, but there’s one crucial coffee ingredient we’ve been neglecting: water. Coffee is 90% water, so why haven’t we been paying more attention to its effect on our coffee?

The right kind of water can drastically change the quality of your coffee. It’s not just an ingredient—it also acts as a solvent when it comes into contact with your coffee. Here’s what you need to know.

What Water Does

Water is absolutely essential for the extraction of coffee flavor itself. That’s why the specialty coffee that tastes amazing with pure bottled water tastes dull and lifeless with regular tap water.

So for starters, don’t use regular tap water! Get yourself a TDS (total distilled solids) meter to test your water. This meter will be able to tell you how many minerals are in your water. You can also buy your own minerals to enhance regular old water. You can buy these minerals separately or buy mineral capsules to just throw in!

Not All Water is Equal

On the surface, all water may look the same, but water contains salts and minerals and maybe even some impurities if you’re unlucky. Most natural spring waters like San Pellegrino and Evian are packed with minerals to make them tastier and healthier, but these don’t necessarily offer the best water for coffee.

So what is the best water for coffee made of? Pay attention to the calcium and magnesium in your water—these are your best friends for premium coffee because they have the strongest extraction properties. The “hardness” of water refers to the total combined measurement of calcium and magnesium and is more important than the overall mineral content. While hard coffee has the potential to really ruin your cup of joe (speaking from health and taste perspectives), you also don’t want your coffee 100% mineral-free.

Tap water is usually healthy for drinking but is not necessarily ideal for coffee because of its high calcium and bicarbonate content. These minerals are essential for the extraction of coffee flavor, but too much will ruin the balance. Lighter roast coffee will especially suffer from this kind of water composition. You need some magnesium in the mix to really pull out the juiciness of the beans.

Do it Yourself!

Try different water recipes—always start with the purest water possible, in order to work with a blank canvas and figure out which recipe works for you. You can try adding epsom salt and baking soda as a starting point. You can buy these ingredients almost anywhere and start experimenting with creating the perfect coffee water. You’ll notice a huge difference in your morning pick-me-up!
For the best water possible and more information on getting this water delivered directly to your home, contact Water Way today!

How Sparkling Water Compares to Bottled Water

With the rise in popularity of sparkling water, there are a lot of rumors being passed around—it’s often presented as a familiar alternative to sugar sodas, but is it really just as healthy as regular still water?

The Rumors

Because of its carbonation, sparkling water has been said to erode tooth enamel, leach calcium from your bones as well as lead to Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). So the question is really about the carbonation—is too much carbonation bad?

We’re pretty accustomed to thinking bubbly drinks are bad for us, but nutritionists have confirmed that sparkling water is basically harmless. Regular sparkling water is sugar-free and calorie-free, and it hydrates you just as well as still water does. When it comes to tooth erosion, this only occurs with acidic beverages like soda, but isn’t linked directly to carbonation. If you don’t like the taste of regular water, sparkling water is a great alternative. Concerns about calcium depletions and tooth erosion simply don’t hold any weight.

Although there are no studies to document this yet, it’s possible that drinking a ton of sparkling water could cause some unpleasant stomach symptoms. Consuming extra carbonation, which is essentially extra air, should keep you on the lookout for excessive burping, flatulence and abdominal distention, all of which could cause a lot of discomfort. If you aren’t particularly sensitive to changes in your diet, you might not experience any of these. If you do experience these symptoms, it’s probably the worst side effect you’ll have, and your body should adjust.

The Part to Watch For

The tricky thing about sparkling water is that not all clear, sparkling drinks are automatically healthy. Tonic water, for example, contains added sodium and sugar. Bottled club soda may also contain added sodium, so make sure you’re checking the labels of the sparkling water you’re drinking. Additionally, if you have an at-home water carbonator that comes with little flavor packets, those packets could contain extra sugar and calories not found in natural water. If you’re drinking more water, but you’re adding soda mix each time, you’re basically just drinking soda.

Americans have bad habits when it comes to drinking their calories, so don’t let your choice of water make things worse! Try flavoring your sparkling water with natural things like mint leaves, lemon and lime slices, cucumber or fresh fruit.
For all your water needs, contact Water Way today!

How to Stay Hydrated While Exercising

We all know that hydration is important and that hydration is especially important if you’re exercising, but you may not know what water temperature is ideal for preventing dehydration and enhancing performance!

The Temperature Difference

The temperature of your water can actually affect how well it hydrates you. Studies have shown that people drink about 50% more cold or cool water compared to warm water when they exercise, and those same studies show that these people are less dehydrated. Cold water keeps your core body temperature, which allows you to exercise longer. The hotter you get, the quicker you’ll feel the fatigue setting in. People who exercise in heat and humidity have a slower and lower rise in core body temperature when they drink cold water, as opposed to lukewarm water. Essentially, people who drink cold water while exercising can go longer without feeling exhausted.

Drinking Water

Cold water is definitely better for your working body and is way more refreshing, but it’s important to remember that no matter the temperature, you need to be drinking water. Staying hydrated altogether will result in a lower body temperature and a lower heart rate, allowing you to perform better.

Experts recommend drinking a large (16 oz) glass of water a few hours before you exercise, and then a cup (8 oz) about 10 to 20 minutes before. While you’re exercising, you should be taking a sip of water every 15 to 20 minutes. Of course, how much water you need to stay hydrated will depend on how much you sweat. The general rule of thumb is to drink 16 to 20 oz of water for every pound of sweat you lose. Try weighing yourself after you shower, and then again after you’ve worked out. After a couple times you’ll have a rough idea of how much sweat you’re losing.

Remember that ultimately it’s the water itself, not the temperature, that’s important. However, if you’d like to sustain your workout for a little longer, try freezing a water bottle before heading out for your sweat session!
For more healthy hydration tips and access to the purest possible water, contact Water Way today.

What Actually Happens During the Water Treatment Process?

We all know that our drinking water is “treated,” but most of us don’t know how. While drinking supplies in the U.S. are among the safest in the world, water can still become contaminated with water-borne germs such as Cryptosporidium, E. coli, Hepatitis A, Giardia intestinalis, and other pathogens. Every community is different—they have different regulations and processes to treat their water—but here’s what the average treatment system looks like.

Coagulation and Flocculation

Chemicals with a positive charge are added to the supply of water that’s being treated—these neutralize the negative charge of other things in the water like dirt and other dissolved particles. These particles then bind with the added chemicals to form larger particles, called floc.

Sedimentation and Filtration

The floc, or larger particles, eventually settle to the bottom of the water supply, leaving only the clear water on top. Once everything has settled, the clear water will pass through filters made up of various combinations of materials, such as sand, charcoal, gravel, etc., as well as through different pore sizes, in order to remove other dissolved particles. Even after the floc has separated, there can be smaller particles left over like dust, parasites, bacteria, viruses, and chemicals.

Disinfection

After the water has been filtered, a strong disinfectant like chlorine or chloramine may be added to kill any addition parasites, bacteria, or viruses. The chemicals added at this stage of the treatment process also supply an extra layer of protection to the water for when it’s eventually piped into homes and businesses. Germs and bacteria will have a harder time entering the water once it’s in your home because of this important step.

While the treatment process certainly varies from community to community, this is what you can expect from a basic system. It will also depend on where the water is coming from! Groundwater typically needs less treatment than surface water sources like rivers or lakes.
If you want guaranteed fresh, pure water, contact Water Way today to find out about their water delivery and installation!

Dehydration Symptoms and Causes

You need about eight cups of water each day to keep your body happy and healthy. When you don’t drink enough over time, you can become something worse than just dehydrated. You can become chronically dehydrated. When you’re constantly dehydrated, you actually become desensitized to dehydration symptoms—meaning you won’t just feel thirsty when you need some water.

Here are eight important symptoms to look out for when your body is telling you it needs more water every day.

#1: Constant Fatigue

We lose fluids in all kinds of ways—sweat, urination, diarrhea, or vomiting—and when we don’t replace it, the blood can become thicker and slower. The heart has to work harder to get oxygen to all of your muscles and major organs. When your body can’t diffuse heat properly, that’s when we feel tired sluggish.

#2: Dry Skin

This is one of the most obvious signs of chronic dehydration, because you’re body is literally drying out. If you notice that your skin is abnormally flaky, cracked, or dull, that’s a good sign that you haven’t been getting enough water.

#: Constipation

Just like the rest of your body, your poop is mostly water. When you’re dehydrated, your colon is forced to remove more water from it than usual, which makes going number two much more difficult. Constipation prevents your body from removing harmful toxins and bacteria. In addition to this, it can cause more serious problems down the road.

#4: Muscle Cramps

With dehydration comes slower, thicker blood. If you’re dehydrated and doing something strenuous, your blood may not be able to make it to your muscles as quickly as it needs to. This will lead to painful muscle cramps. Even if you drink lots of water during or after working out, if you’re chronically dehydrated that won’t be enough!

#5: Infrequent Urination and Kidney Stones

Just like chronic dehydration can cause constipation, there are also medical issues that come with not urinating frequently enough. A kidney stone is made by a buildup of minerals in the urine, and this is caused by dehydration. You should be urinating often, and it should be clear. If it’s dark or has an odd odor, you definitely need more water.

#6: Dry Mouth and Bad Breath

When your body isn’t getting enough water, your mouth can’t produce enough saliva. Saliva has antibacterial properties that kill bad breath germs and other bacteria in your mouth. These germs are the biggest cause of bad breath! There are million of tiny functions in your body that require water, so make sure you’re fueling it.

#7: Overeating

Food is one of the main ways you take in water, and if you aren’t drinking enough your body will compensate by making you hungry. This can make things even worse if the foods you’re craving are high in sodium or caffeine. Go for fruits and vegetables instead, or anything with a high water content, and when you feel hungry, try drinking a glass of water first! You could just be dehydrated.
For easy, hands-free access to the purest water, contact Water Way.