Stay Hydrated & Stay In School: Your Back To School Hydration Checklist


Back To School Hydration ChecklistAs you close out the summer with the kids, and get ready for those first few sweet weeks of silence around your home, ensuring your kids stay hydrated is critical to ensuring they don’t just go back to school – but stay back in school.

Everything from concentration to cognitive ability relies on your child’s ability to stay hydrated.  This post by Philippa Norman, MD  shares some of the reasons why.  Plus, when your child stays hydrated, they are more certain to stay healthy, stay at level moods and even stay freer of acne.  In other words, they’ll stay freer of those issues that cause them to miss school in the first place.

With that said, here’s a quick 5-step checklist that you can use to help your child stay hydrated every day of the school year, along with some products from our online store (shared when appropriate) that can help you complete each item:

1. Serve Clean Drinking Water With Breakfast (and Lunch & Dinner)
A big part of the reason kids (not to mention adults) wake up with low energy levels is simply mild dehydration.

During the time we spend sleeping, our body uses up the hydration it has stored, meaning it needs to be replaced. ZD-010 ZeroWater Water Filter Pitcher Serving a tall glass of water, along with juice, milk or coffee during breakfast, is a great way to get this hydration back into the body.  And just so lunch and dinner don’t feel left out, we’d advise a tall glass of water accompanying every meal.

A filtered water pitcher, including those we offer from Brita, PUR or ZeroWater (pictured,) can ensure the drinking water you serve at meal-time always tastes clean, fresh and cool.  Many of these pitchers are even sharp enough looking to deserve their own place at your table!

2. Send Them Off With An Eco-Friendly Water Bottle
What’s great about the explosion in bottled water sales is that it means we are starting to understand the importance of staying hydrated and having a source of hydration close-by.  Many schools, in fact, will now even offer bottled water in vending machines.  The downside, though, is that plastic water bottles account for a significant percentage of plastic waste.  In other words, great for your body, not so great for the planet.

Fortunately, we offer several eco-friendly water bottles, including many that will fit into lunch boxes, that can help keep your son or daughter hydrated without contributing to plastic waste.

Klean Kanteen 12-Ounce Stainless Steel Water Bottle with Sport-Top3. Provide The Right Drinking Water Containers For The Right Time
Before sending your son or daughter off to school with a water bottle, one important task it to be sure that you send them with the right type of bottle, both in terms of when they’ll be using it and what the school approves.

If your son or daughter’s school does not allow beverages in the classroom,  a smaller bottle – like the 12 ounce Klean Kanteen water bottle to the left – will fit easily into most lunchboxes and take up little space in a locker.  This type of bottle is great for younger kids!

Katadyn MyBottle Water Purifier BottleOn the other hand, if your son or daughter will be using a water bottle primarily in after-school athletics, a sturdier bottle with a longer spout, straw and mouthpiece cover would be more ideal as it will stand up to more while remaining a more sanitary source of hydration – even when shoved into a dirty gear bag.  The Katadyn MyBottle to the right is a great option.

4. Keep A Source of Great Tasting Drinking Water On Hand At Home
Once the kids arrive home, be sure that they remain hydrated throughout the evening by ensuring there’s a great source of hydration on hand, especially during meal time.

As noted above, many of the filtered water pitchers we offer look great on a dining table, while our selection of faucet filters, countertop or undersink filters help to ensure your children get great tasting drinking water from virtually any tap in your home.

5. Manage Drinking Water Intake (Softly, If Necessary)
“How many glasses of water have you had today?”

This simple question is perhaps the easiest way to get your kids to drink more water.  Honestly, whether they’ve only had one glass or whether they’ve had six glasses, asking this question will likely prompt kids of any age to drink another – which is great from a hydration stand-point.  After all, any other response would simply lead to a battle that just about any child would know not to pick, in favor of something of far greater importance to them.  Sometimes, the predictability of kid behavior can be a great thing!

How else do you help your kids stay hydrated, both when it’s time to go back to school and all throughout the year?  I invite you to share your thoughts via a comment below.

I also invite you to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or +1 us on Google+ to be the first to see exclusive new filter sales and discounts.

Are you a veteran, currently serving in the Armed Forces, or buying a gift for a veteran or soldier?  Use the discount code ‘VETERAN’ at checkout to take 5% off your entire order!

The Great Mystery Revealed: Does Water Have a Taste?


What does water taste like? It’s a simple question, but a quick trip to Google tells me that everyone has a different idea of exactly what water tastes like. My search uncovered a wide range of responses from some of the internet’s top flavor detectives and included…

the expected:  “it tastes like water” and “it has no taste”

the more scientific: “the taste depends on what was dissolved in it”

the outright humorous: “Liquefied boring” and “Mundane in a glass”

and my personal favorite: “One Atom Hydrogen, Two Atoms Oxygen. Shaken Not Stirred”

Healthy-child-drinking-water

Obviously, there isn’t a clear consensus on what exactly water tastes like, but there is definitely a growing market for flavored water. In addition to bottles of flavored water like Aquafina’s Flavor Splash, many companies offer flavor packets that can be added to water anywhere you go to improve the taste. Kraft foods, the second largest food and Beverage Company in the world, recently launched their line of MiO flavor dispensers, hoping to break into what is now a billion dollar market for flavored water.

Floating-dollar-signDrinking water is the best way to stay hydrated and it should also be the cheapest, but when you add in the cost of adding flavor packets or buying fancy bottles with a hint of fruit flavoring it actually becomes more expensive than soda. Why are consumers paying more to add flavor to their water? The answer would seem to be that even though we aren’t really sure what water tastes like, we have decided that we don’t like the way water tastes.

This is primarily because most tap water is disinfected with chlorine, which adds an unpleasant taste and odor to the water, and often has dissolved minerals and organic material that can adversely affect the flavor of water. The unpleasant taste of tap water is one of the main reasons the bottled water industry grew so quickly and helps to explain the new fad for flavored water.

The easiest way to improve the quality of your tap water is by filtering out the chlorine and other contaminants that cause the poor taste. You would be amazed at how much better your tap water will taste with just a simple filter, like this GXULQ system from GE, installed under the kitchen sink.

Of course, variety is the spice of life and you may find you still want to add a little flavor to your water. Instead of spending a lot of hard earned cash on single-use packets why not try making your own flavored water. Adding a little mint or citrus is easy to do and is a fun way to enhance the flavor of filtered water.

Citrus-and-mint-flavored-drink

Once you have perfected your masterpiece, why not share your favorite flavor recipes with us on Facebook? We would love to hear what you do to make your water taste great!

Tap Water – What a Deal!



Groupon, Living Social, Woot, ManDeals… It seems like every other day a new daily deal site is popping up! 
I don't know about you, but my inbox is positively flooded with deals for kids' art classes, spa visits, and teeth whitening. But hey–who doesn't love a deal?  We certainly do–we're the Discount Filter Store, after all!

Dollar symbolWhether you're searching for  a water filter for your fridge, a weekend getaway, or an LED kitty collar (yes, it's a real thing!), you'd probably prefer to buy your goods at a discount. Let's face it–with the price of gas hovering at a bajillion dollars a gallon pretty much everyone in the country but Bill Gates and Warren Buffet could stand to save a couple of dollars whenever they can, right?

By the way–you're going to love us for this–we found a way to get all of our daily deals and coupons in one daily email. JACKPOT! You've got to check out yipit.com (after you read this awesome blog post, of course!) You inbox will thank you.

Truth is, while you could join every deal site out there, you might be overlooking the easiest possible way to save money every day. And you don't even have to have an internet connection to get this deal, folks! It's right in your kitchen. You know, that cool, clean, live-giving fluid that come straight out of your faucet and refrigerator dispenser? That's right. We're talking tap water. Bottled water money

(Wait–before you turn up your nose at the thought of drinking from the tap, ask yourself when was the last time you changed your water filter. Hmmm?)

Tap water is just as clean and just as safe as bottled water…and at $0.002 a gallon is monumentally less expensive than the same stuff bottled water. (Did you know? 24% of the bottled water we buy is tap water repackaged by Coke and Pepsi.)1

Klean kanteenYes, you can buy a half-liter of Evian for $1.69. Seems cheap, right? But here's the deal. If the water we use at home cost what even cheap bottled water costs, our monthly water bills would run $9,000!


Put another way, if you bought and drank a bottle of Evian, you could refill that bottle once a day for 10 years, 5 months, and 21 days with  tap water before that water would cost $1.69. 


I don't know about you, but we here at Discount Filter Store think that $0.002 for a gallon is a pretty darn good deal. Consider this: a gallon of Hershey's syrup costs $13.23. Tobasco sauce–$94.46 a gallon. And a gallon of scorpion venom? That'll set you back a cool $38,858,507.46.2


There are lots of great ways to save dollars. Switching from bottled water to tap water might just be the easiest one. Just get yourself a refillable water bottle (we like this one from Klean Kanteen), fill 'er up, and carry on. Or Groupon. Or clip a coupon. 

Come on!

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1 Charles Fischman, Message in a Bottle, http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/117/features-message-in-a-bottle.html?page=0%2C0 (July 2007).

2 Cockeyed.com, The Price of a Gallon, http://www.cockeyed.com/science/gallon/liquid.html.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to Drink, When: How to Hydrate for Exercise


Water, Sport Drinks…Coffee? What do you drink to stay hydrated–and does it matter? We break down your best options for keeping hydrated before, during, and after exercise. 

Glass water

Before you jump on that treadmill, tie your running shoes, or reach for that Wii controller, pour yourself a glass of water. (From the tap, of course!) But be sure to start drinking 2-3 hours before you work out! Don't wait till you get to the gym to fill your water bottle!

 

Don't like the taste of your tap water? You're not alone. In fact, it's the number one reason more exercisers drink flavored water. Be careful, though-some flavored waters can deliver as much sugar as soda while others contain potentially problematic artificial sweeteners. Do yourself a favor and filter your tap water. You'll be surprised just how good your water can taste! 

 

Coconut
Looking for a natural alternative to plain water? Coconut water might be your best bet. It's naturally rich in electrolytes, with twice the potassium of a banana. But with a price tag of $2-3 a serving– is it really worth it?

 

 

Many of us turn to sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade during longer, more intense workouts. Sports drinks replenish the sodium and potassium your body loses through sweat–but they're relatively pricy and ugh-those plastic bottles.  Try the powdered mixes instead–they work just as well, cost far less than buying sports drinks by the case, and leave your recycling bin lighter.

 

Most of us are used to that morning cup of joe–but few of us think of coffee as a workout enhancer. But if you can stomach it (pun intended), a cup of coffee or two before or during exercise can give your workout a boost. 

 

Post-workout
Turns out that most of us don't exercise heavily enough to need a sports recovery drink. Water is just fine for most people. But if you need few more choices for what to guzzle down before you hit the shower, read on.  A dose of juice can ease inflammation and quelch those exercise-induced free radicals. And what's even better than a carb-loaded sports drink? Milk.  It helps with muscle recovery and replenishes glycogen stores–it really does do a body good!

 

Perhaps the best post-workout beverage option we've heard of, though, comes from a group of Spanish researchers who claim that your best option might just be…

 

Beer.   Guinness for Strength poster.img_assist_custom-480x355

 

Yep.  Those Guinness ads were right all along. Beer is good for your health after all! Turns out a
pint of beer works even better than water to replenish lost carbohydrates and rehydrate your body. 

 

So now we know the secret of Babe Ruth's success…

FAQ: Is Bottled Water Safer than Tap Water?


Not at all!

 According to a report commissioned by Switzerland-based World Wildlife Fund International, "bottled water may be no safer or healthier than tap water, while selling for up to 1,000 times the price." 

Glass water

 

 

The Government Accounting Office says that bottled water isn't any safer than tap water and could actually be more dangerous.  The Consumerist notes that "tap water is covered by the Safe Water Drinking Act, administered by the aggressive and powerful Environmental Protection Agency, while bottled water falls under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act overseen by the powerless anything-goes industry-lovers over at the Food and Drug Administration."

 

 

National Geographic notes that bottled water is a drain on the environment:  Bottled water money

  • The U.S. public goes through about 50 billion water bottles a year, and most of those plastic containers are not recycled.
  • Transporting the bottles and keeping them cold also burns fossil fuels, which give off greenhouse gases.

The plastic in water bottles may pose a health risk. According to the NRDC, "chemicals called phthalates, which are know to disrupt testosterone and other hormones, can leach into bottled water over time."

The Pacific Institute estimates that producing the plastic in water bottles requires more than 17 million barres of oil and produces more than 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide. 

Tap water

 

 

So why do some people still insist on choosing bottled water? The number one answer is simply "taste" according to surveys conducted by the IBWA. Yet a simple water filter installed in your refrigerator, faucet, water line, or water pitcher drastically reduces the chorine and impurities that can give tap water an unpleasant taste.

 

 

 

Aren't you ready to give up the bottled water habit? 

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