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Is Your Water Bottle Making You Sick?

By Sara Butler

Drinking enough water each day is imperative for your good health and wellness. You know this -- which is why you carry around your trusty refillable water bottle, right? Refillable water bottles are a great thing, but they may be making you sick. If you don’t clean your water bottle enough, then it can be a host for some serious health hazards.

It doesn’t matter what your water bottle is made of. It can be plastic, stainless steel, or some other material, but you should make it a point to sanitize it at the end of the day. Here are some easy ways to make sure your water bottle is a source of good health and not the opposite!

The Problem

Your water bottle creates a moist environment that is the perfect place for bacteria to set up shop. If this happens, then it can cause symptoms such as:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea

Bacteria, such as E. coli, can grow in water bottles and lead to food poisoning-like symptoms or gastroenteritis -- even mold can grow in your bottle if you’re not careful. That’s why it’s important to clean the smaller parts of the water bottle with a toothbrush or bottle brush. You want to get every nook and cranny for a deep clean and make it a habit.

Throw it in the Dishwasher

Many bottles are dishwasher safe, but make sure to check that it is before you throw it in. Put your bottle on the top rack and then run the dishwasher on the hottest setting with a heated dry cycle. This will help to sanitize and kill germs, just make sure it’s totally dry before you fill it up again.

Soap and Water

You can go old school and use hot water and soap to clean your water bottle. Just be careful to use a clean sponge or cloth to clean it or you could be making the bacteria problem even worse. Fill it with soapy water and swish it around, making sure to focus on the cap and wash any buildup away. Then rinse it all with warm water to remove all the soap before you set it out to dry.


White distilled vinegar is a great disinfectant, so consider using it on your water bottle. Dilute the vinegar with water and it will kill any bacteria growing. Fill up the bottle half with water and half with vinegar, put the cap on, and then leave it to soak overnight. Rinse it in the morning and you’re good to go!

Take care of your water bottle and it will take care of you!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Englewood, Colo.

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