There are scary things spreading their anti-natural tentacles in the city tap water. Sure, a few of them have been added with intention to “disinfect” the water supply, but most chemical agents are very hard on the liver and, in the case of fluoride, kidneys. If you're elimination system is busy trying to vanquish chemical “disinfectants” from your system, what time or strength does it have to get rid of the real bad boys (like, giardia, say) that will gladly slip through the open doors left by a compromised immune system?
Water filtration is quite important, especially in an age where water is treated and indiscriminantly recycled (toilet water becomes drinking water and so forth). Prescriptions that aren't killed by chemical agents are free to combine and perhaps even become new poisons born of combined allopathic medicines that were never meant to mix (millions of city toilets be damned). Protecting yourself and your family to the degree you're able is a wise aim. Informed, you stand a chance at getting back to some degree of normalcy with water filtration, organic eating, and natural medicines. Good old-fashioned boiled water will kill some things, some very lethal things, but its powers are limited, so take care to avoid being too reliant on it as a sole practice for DIY water treatment.
Distillation is an excellent recourse, if only for its ability to eradicate fluoride (a bi-product of aluminum processing scraped from industrial chimneys... gov's not even giving you the natural stuff). Its power over filter-dependent systems - which usually aren't very cost-effective and dependent on brand may only handle a certain sphere of contaminants - is its simplicity and ongoing reusability.
Distillers can be entirely made on a DIY scale by connecting two pots that have holes in their lids to each other with an air-tight hollow cord or piping covering each opening. Placing water in one pot, and sitting the other pot beside the container being boiled on a burner will deliver distilled water that rises up the cord/piping and descends into the other collecting container. The same process is effectively used with sun-distillation though it will take considerably longer. If you're not DIY savvy, however, this may not be as exciting for you as it is for "maker-types". You can find commercial models for as little as 75.00.
Distillation removes bacteria and viruses with ease and will also desalinate seawater when necessary. It also removes metals (even the heavy ones) from the water it processes. It forces magnesium, phosphate, and calcium out of water as well. A potential problem to consider, however, is the demineralization process that also strips minerals the body needs and leaves water potentially acidic. If you're using distillation, you may want to consider prilling the water afterward to raise the ph to a healthy alkaline level. Adding a bit of a baking soda and lime can also alkalize water in a pinch.
Prill beads are small spheres of magnesium oxide that rose to prominence in the clean up of nuclear waste in waterways. To this end, they're said to work magnificently, but apparently, they have a ton of other effects upon water, including aiding in the detox of the body (when first starting to drink prilled water, drink small amounts to avoid harsh detox symptoms).
They're also reusable. Said to provide enhanced hydration and the resulting glow and luster brought out of skin and hair respectively, Prill water also aids in the absorption of nutrients and acts as a potent assistant in eradicating metals and general toxins that shouldn't be in the body. Prill water can be used for anything, including aiding the waterways with every flush when placed in a sachet in your toilet bowl. When prill water is added to waterways it knocks contaminants out of the picture, helping nature and its inhabitants to regain health again. Water that's been treated with Prill Beads will have a PH of at least 7.4.
The average bag of prill beads shouldn't cost you more than 11.00 to 12.00 dollars, and making it is fairly easeful. Have a glass gallon jug (avoid plastic) filled with water (the purer the better as there is some debate about prill's effectiveness in totally eradicating fluoride). Add a satchel of prill beads to the water, and let it sit overnight (longer soaking times produce stronger water). After the soak time, pour up to ¾ of the water into smaller glass bottles (even upcycled iced tea containers or related bottles work well), and enjoy whenever your thirst hits. Add more water to the ¾ prilled h2O in the original jug, and it will be ready to drink in one hour (there must be water that's already been prilled for at least 24 hours in the jug to enjoy this option regularly).
Known in some circles as hyper-filtration, reverse osmosis is a stand-by process for a few bottled water producers (the sort who don't attempt to pass off tap water as “spring” water, most likely) intent on eradicating contaminants from the water they market. It's said to be the most effective eradicator of contaminants available in some circles, but there are other factions who assert that minerals which are alkaline and good for the body are also filtered from water that's been treated by reverse osmosis causing it to be an acidic water that can leech calcium from the physical system. And, in addition to being a very expensive and slow processor, up to eight gallons of water is wasted to make a mere one gallon of treated water. For green-boned types, the latter fact relegates reverse osmosis to the land of water-treatment “non-options”.
The process utilizes a semi-permeable membrane that doesn't interfere with the passage of clean water, but stops toxins that are “too big” from accessing its gate. Most contaminants that are inorganic in nature “shall not pass” even if they are a dissolved sort of metal like arsenic, copper, lead, or mercury, for instance. Bacteria and viruses are another matter, however. Reverse Osmosis can treat this sort of thing, but it's not the antithesis of these foes. Utilizing a secondary option to ensure you zap everything, is your best bet. Running water through a distiller and then a reverse osmosis filtration system should combat most of the nasties, you'd rather not consume, quite rather nicely.