Celebrities and some nutrition gurus have touted the benefits of a raw diet for years. The latest ‘raw’ trend goes way beyond fruits and vegetables, though, and has the potential to drive consumers to your urgent care center. It’s water. Raw water is untreated and unfiltered; it’s literally drawn from the earth, bottled, and sold for upwards of $15 a gallon. The problem, health-wise, is that it could be tainted with pesticides, animal waste, and parasites and infect patients with E coli and cholera. Further, like many unprocessed items, raw water has an expiration date; even its proponents acknowledge that if it isn’t consumed within a couple of months of bottling it will turn green with algae, according to a report in the New York Post. ABC News, The New York Times, and The Washington Post are among other mainstream media outlets alerting the public of the potential dangers. If patients present with symptoms that could be attributed to E coli and cholera without other likely causes, ask if they’ve bought the hype and tried raw water recently.
‘Raw’ is Healthy—Except When It’s Potentially Deadly