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Autoimmune Diseases

The most common water quality problems are related to the presence of bacteria, total coliform, iron, manganese, elevated hardness, corrosive water, nitrates, elevated copper or lead, discolored water, odor, and regionally elevated levels of select metals. Depending on the region and depth of the well or water source, the salinity, chloride, sodium, sulfate, and fluoride content of the water could be a concern. In rare cases the problem is associated with cysts, oocysts, or viruses and depending on the surrounding land-use and land-use activities, petrochemicals, solvents, surfactants, and industrial chemicals may be an issue. The most common diseases associated with water quality issues are typically related to diarrhea, dysentery, travelers disease, and other gastrointestinal issues, but there are approximately 80 suspected or known autoimmune disorders that may be related to water quality issues.

Autoimmune diseases are actually very common and directly impact over 23 million Americans. An Autoimmune disease is when the body responds to a substance or agent in a way that creates a response where the body actually attacks itself and healthy cells by mistake. At this time, it is not known what causes the overreaction and in most cases it is likely a combination of factors and not simply just one element or contaminate.

A partial listing of potential agents of concern are as follows:

Aluminum (Secondary Inorganic)
Arsenic (Primary Inorganic)
Bacterial and Viral Infections (Primary Microbiological)
Boron (No Standard Inorganic)
Cadmium (Primary Inorganic)
Chromium (Primary Inorganic)
Disinfection By-Products (Primary)
Fluoride (Primary Inorganic)
Foaming Agents / Surfactants (Secondary Conditions)
Herbicides and Pesticides (No Standard Condition)
Iron (Secondary Inorganic)
Manganese (Secondary Inorganic)
Nickel - Health Advisory limit 0.7 mg/L, but some states have a standard of 0.1 mg/L and the World Health Organization has a standard of 0.02 mg/L.
Trichloroethylene (VOC)
Synthetic Organic Compounds (SOCs)
Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)

In addition, the lack of particular elements, dehydration, or overhydration may trigger an autoimmune response. It has been suggested that magnesium deficiency may play a role at creating this trigger. Our primary recommendation is to be properly hydrated, get your water tested, install water treatment systems (if needed), and seek advice from medical and other experts. This is one reason we recommend Level 3 Informational Water Testing to provide a cost-effective method to check the vulnerability of your water source, plus the use of self-monitoring equipment. In many cases, you may need to conduct air quality or other testing and we would recommend conducting a Neighborhood Environmental Report for your residence and the use of a comprehensive Whole-House Water Treatment System as a final barrier. It may be wise to have a Waterborne Pathogen Panel (7 organisms) completed.

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