When I get tense and overwrought, my stress level climbs. You can’t have one without the other. My doctor is concerned since stress is the body’s arch enemy. It can exacerbate what already ails you and make it worse. He says it is time to take stock of the situation and implement some new health strategies. Managing weight is one of them. Stress can sharpen one’s appetite and help pack on a few unwanted pounds. He mandated that I stop drinking sodas to lose weight. I love them and have been known to indulge in one or more a day. He reminded me of the contents—those artificial sweeteners that are chemical devils that wreak havoc with your system. If you don’t drink the diet brands, you are imbibing tons of sugar. Dieting will, of course, control weight, but drinking soda is a health issue of a different nature. The doctor said to think of sugar, even the artificial kind, as poison. It gets into your cells in any case and messes with metabolism.

“Let’s get on the fast track, Beth,” he warned, “and do it now.” Let’s develop an exercise regime, a simple nutrition plan, and the replacement of all soda with pure, clean water. Given the reputation of the local water in my community, I am loathe to drink from the tap. I hate the taste and imagine that the water is full of chlorine and lead—and who knows what else! There is the additional issue of lingering odor. Most people opt for the tap for economic reasons, but why do I see virtually everyone walking or driving with a plastic bottle in hand? We are obsessed with bottled water in this country, but I am going another route. It is something that has always been available to everyone, but somehow largely ignored in the quest for more Evian.

I have read numerous reviews of home water filtration systems and they sound ideal for personal use. I will get pure water with no residue taste. I will get rid of sodas and drink more water if I am going to go to all this trouble and expense. My unit will be NSF certified as suggested by the descriptions and testimonials. It will be a good motivator for me to comply with the doctor’s wishes. I know that he can nag if I don’t follow up with his program. He is the guardian of my health, he says, and responsible for what I do. He looked at the whole house water filter reviews that I’d printed and thought that investing in one was a great idea and suggested either the carbon kind or reverse osmosis. No one wants to ingest or bathe in corrosion. Any expense is worth getting rid of contaminants. He was proud of my quick turnaround on the sodas.

There is one hidden drawback that you all should know. You have to replace the filters and clean the tanks. Pure water comes at a price in dollars and labor.