Are aluminum (aluminium) water bottles safe?

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

“Are aluminum water bottles safe?” is a rather frequent search term that is linked to the GREEN (LIVING) REVIEW and therefore I thought it might be good it I would explain here a little as to aluminum and safety.

Aluminum, aka aluminium in Europe, is not food safe – it took them a long while to find that one out – and therefore all aluminum bottles (and cans) will (have to) be lined with a coating which, in most cases, contains bisphenol A (BPA), which is a raster nasty substance in that it is a hormone disruptor and thus referred to as a gender bender.

SIGG water bottles, now, are, so they claimed, lined with a BPA-free liner but then Gaiam claimed that theirs was BPA-free and it then was found to be leaching more of the chemical into the water than any of those that were known to contain BPA. So, as far as I am concerned only stainless steel or glass bottles for me, and maybe, though that is then plastic again, BPA-free polycarbonate bottles like “We Want Tap” bottle.

If, and that question was also raised in some of the search engine inquiries, we are talking about the old military canteens made from aluminum my advise would be not to use them in any way. They do not have liners and thus aluminum will leach into the drink, and more so if it is not just water but anything acidic.

Aluminum is a “heavy metal” and not very good at all for you health and thus let me state that aluminum water bottles are not safe to use, and as far as I am concerned, not even with just plain water. Therefore avoid aluminum bottles, even if they are claimed to have a BPA-free liner.

Stainless steel bottles, and those of glass, are basically the only ones that are safe safe to use, as are those made of plastics that do not contain BPA.

If you want an unbreakable light water bottle then, as far as green goes, stainless steel is the best choice, as plastic is not really a good environmentally friendly choice. Stainless steel – as well as glass – can be recycled nigh indefinitely; not something that can be done with plastic, or whatever kind.

To sum it up, once again, do not use aluminum bottles, especially not if they are not lined and are “pure” aluminum, as the military canteens were, for instance, and even be careful with lined aluminum bottles.

© 2011