Canadian Environmental Health Atlas

Understanding Our Environment is Key to Promoting Health and Preventing Disease

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Drinking Water Quality

Drinking Water Quality

Drinking Water Quality

Our bodies are made up of about 70% water. Most of our fluid intake comes from consuming water and drinks made with water. Because many contaminants, including lead and arsenic, are soluble in water, we can be exposed to toxins when we drink water.

The concentration of toxins (quantity in water) and dose (amount of water ingested) determine whether a person will experience harmful effects. Ingestion is the most common route of exposure, though some toxins can be absorbed through the skin or by inhalation while taking a shower.