Chromium 6 Solutions: Ion Resin Exchanges & Reverse Osmosis are the Best

I received a heads up from one of our readers this morning (thanks Cat) that CNN featured an article today on its website about the fact that the drinking water in of 31 out of 35 American cities tested, exceeded the recommended levels of Hexavalent Chromium (aka chromium 6). You can link to the CNN page at the end of this article. If the words Chromium 6 means nothing to you, just think back to the movie “Erin Brockovich” starring Julia Roberts that dealt with the poisoning of local water supplies by means of Chromium 6 by the local utility. Chromium 6 is a carcinogenic (cancer causing) compound. Should this be a concern to you? Absolutely. Is there an easy and inexpensive solution? Yes!

How to get rid of Chromium 6

The EPA has rated the best methods of removing Hexavalent Chromium (Chromium 6) for commercial applications to reduce the concentration down to 0.1 ppm (parts per million). First on the list is coagulation/filtraion, followed by ion exchange, then lime softening, and finally reverse osmosis. For a homeowner, ion exchange and reverse osmosis are practical applications.

In addition, it appears a number of other types of filters will remove Chromium 6 in a limited capacity including activated carbon filters and iron filters.

Therefore, anyone that currently uses an ion exchange system (available in a Brita filter or the new Antioxidant Filters) will be in good shape. If you use a reverse osmosis system, you will also be protected, but reverse osmosis has drawbacks when it comes to long term consumption of drinking water. If you have a basic charcoal pre-filter system under your counter, you should also be in good shape for the small amount of water that passes through the system.

Brita filters can be purchased at any Walmart or hardware store for under $20. Brita utilizes a brilliant marketing strategy whereby they basically sell their systems for a small profit so that they can sell you their high profit margin replacement filters for years. The Brita strategy follows the successful marketing campaign used by the Schick organization in the past. Schick used to mail out free razors and then sell you razor blades for years. The cost of replacement filters add up as they cost about $10 each and need to be replace every few weeks depending upon usage.

A more convenient and cost effective solution is to purchase and install an under counter filter canister that contains a granulated activated carbon (GAC) filter. You can purchase under counter pre-filters for about $69 at a store like Home Depot and the replacement filters should cost under $20 and will last a full year.

For those of you who use a water ionizer, you are covered by the activated charcoal in the filters. Water ionizers don’t remove a lot of the nasty stuff found in our water, but the filters in the machines all include carbon filters. The only water ionizer that I know of that doesn’t use activated carbon is the Chanson brand as they use a carbon block filter. If you are contemplating buying a water ionizer, the chromium 6 scare is as good a reason as any to take the plunge. Great water ionizers are now available for about $1,500, but should be viewed as an ionizer that performs minimal contaminant removal.

The best solution to removing chromium 6 and other contaminants that I know of from a basic filtration standpoint comes from the new Antioxidant Filters. The Antioxidant Filters provide a much more sophisticated filtration system than offered by all of the above alternatives. The Antioxidant Filters utilize an ion exchange system which is the best household remedy according to the EPA. The Antioxidant filters also provide activated carbon (or better still, catalytic carbon). The Antioxidant Filters start at $399 and should be viewed as a great contaminant filter that remove a myriad of contaminants plus they also ionize water.

Are you safe if you drink bottled water?

Maybe… but maybe not. The bottled water industry is not regulated. That means that the water that you drink out of a bottle may or may not have been filtered through an ion exchange system or even an activated charcoal filter. I have written a number of articles about the bottled water industry that clearly point out that you don’t know what you are getting, and you are definitely overpaying for what you are getting by a wide margin. Unless you need to grab a bottle of water in an emergency, there are many superior and cost effective solutions to hydrating your body. The only time I would ever recommend bottled water would be when your alternatives are limited to sodas or fruity sugar based juices.

Are there other contaminants that you should be worried about in your drinking water?

YES! I wrote an article in September based upon a story in the New York Times. The article discusses the fact that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has identified 60,000 contaminants found in the USA. Eventually, all contaminants find their way into the water supply. While 60,000 contaminants exist in our water supply, the Safe Drinking Water Act only covers 91 of the contaminants. You can read the article here:

While Chromium 6 is the flavor of the day because of the new study, it represents only one of sixty thousand problems that may be in your drinking water.

You can read the article from CNN here:

While many news items are generated to catch the attention of the public so that more viewers/subscribers will tune in. Why else would we be exposed to the never ending fluff pieces that appear everywhere? The Chromium 6 article is not a fluff piece and people should be taking it seriously. However, chromium six is just the tip of the iceberg as there are many more contaminants in our drinking water that can and do hurt us.

Please take this issue to heart and make the decision to install some kind of water purification system in your home. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to look after your health and the health of your family. Water is not a priority for most people, but it is the most important thing that you put in your body.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.

8 Responses to Chromium 6 Solutions: Ion Resin Exchanges & Reverse Osmosis are the Best

  1. Hi Dr. Bayley:

    Thanks for offering your testimonial. I took the liberty of reposting it in the comments section as it is appropriate to the article about filtration.

    When I was in the water ionizer business, I used to encourage every customer to purchase a pre-filtration system along with their water ionizer. While many took my advice, a lot of people chose to believe that their source water was “clean”. I could never understand their decision because they were spending a couple of thousand dollars on a water ionizer and wouldn’t spend a couple hundred dollars on proper filtraton.

    If the public was aware of what was in their tap water, everyone, and I mean EVERY ONE would purchase pre-filters. Additionally, as you suggested Dr. Bayley, if the public knew just how beneficial ionized water was to their health, EVERY ONE would also purchase a system to ionize their water. Imo, the new Antioxidant
    Filters offer the best of both worlds…at a price that is affordable to almost anyone.

  2. I am a naturopath and Nutritionist. My wife Lyn and I operate a clinic in Perth australia we teach people to grow younger gracefully. How to live longer and stay young with Oxygen and Ionized water and by changing eating habits.

    I am 64 my wife is 51 we both look 15 years to Twenty years younger than what we are. People are shocked when I show them how filtered water from the municipal water supplies can deteriorate there tissues 35% faster than ionized water.

    See my website and see the tests I carry out with comparison waters. You will never drink filtered tap water ever again.

    Dr Will Bayley ND dip

    • This is an excellent post! And an excellent blog for that matter. Thanks to all that are making some of the not so clear issues of ionized water logical. Follow the money is sticking in my head right at this time. Happy NEW YEAR 2011!

      • Hi Laurel:

        Thanks for your comments and the compliment. It is great to hear from Kangen Distributors, because I believe they are the people that are making the real difference.

  3. The water in my area contains .14 parts per billion of chromium 6. Will a filter that removes 98.4 percent of chromium help? I guess what I’m asking is will the filter take out 98% pf the
    .14 ppb or is that ammount so minute it will pass on through?

    • Hi Tim:

      Good question and I bet others are wondering about the same thing.

      A filter that that is rated to remove 98% of a substance will remove 98% of whatever enters the filters. Therefore, if your source water has 14 ppb, the water exiting the 98% filter will have 0.28 ppb. Not exactly pure, but pretty close.

  4. Are evian or mountain sring water safe? Does anyone know of brands that are safe???

    • Hi Rex:

      Most water is safe for drinking, including most tap water.

      If you are concerned about a municipal source water, call the municipality as they must provide test results from an independent testing facility. If you want to check out a bottled water product, contact the company.


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