Health and Living

Posts that help you make informed decisions about the water in your home, and how it affects your life.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Superbowl Pizza Dough Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 1.28.2016

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

Chef Steve Schimoler

When I think about having friends over for a Super Bowl party, one word comes to mind: pizza. The biggest football event of the year doesn’t seem complete unless pizza is on the menu.

Homemade pizza dough is actually pretty simple to make…with the main ingredients being flour and—you guessed it—water. But you don’t want to use just any water. Purified water will help ensure that the taste of the dough is free from minerals and true to its flavor. Plus, water that it too hard can lead to stiffer dough whereas very soft water can create a slow-rising, weaker dough. Purified water ensures that the dough turns out as intended.

Of course, water temperature and the amount used can play key roles in the quality of the dough, as well as the temperature and humidity in your kitchen as it will effect the proofing and “rise” of your dough. It may take a few experiments to get the dough consistency you’re looking for… or as you search for alternate crust styles. But it’s worth it in the end as there is nothing really like working with the supple texture of the dough as you knead it and work it with your fingers.

The only other advice I’ll give is to be careful: once you start making your own pizza dough, you won’t want to eat any other kind ever again.

Superbowl Sunday Pizza Dough

Ingredients:

Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water (110°F to 115°F) 2/3 cup
Sugar 1 tsp.
Fast Rise Yeast or Active Dry Yeast 1/8 oz. package
Bread Flour 1 3/4 cups
Salt 1/2 tsp.
Cornmeal (optional) 1 TBSP

Directions:

  • Combine water and sugar in small bowl; stir to dissolve sugar.
  • Sprinkle yeast on top; stir to combine.
  • Let stand 5 to 10 minutes or until foamy.
  • Combine flour and salt in medium bowl.
  • Stir in yeast mixture.
  • Mix until mixture forms soft dough.
  • Remove dough to lightly floured surface.
  • Knead 5 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic, adding additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed.
  • Place dough in medium bowl coated with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Turn dough in bowl so top is coated with cooking spray; cover with towel or plastic wrap.
  • Let rise in warm place 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
  • Punch dough down; place on lightly floured surface and knead about 2 minutes or until smooth.
  • Pat dough into flat disc about 7 inches in diameter.
  • Let rest 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Pat and gently stretch dough from edges until dough seems to not stretch anymore.
  • Let rest 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Continue patting and stretching until dough is 12 to 14 inches in diameter.

You’re ready to assemble your pizza now and feel free to improvise with your toppings, but I tend to go with the straight up Marinara and Mozzarella style. You can use a pizza pan to bake on, but I prefer using a pizza stone that’s already in the preheated 500 degree oven and using a pizza peel, slide the pie onto the stone and bake till it starts to blister on the crust and the cheese is fully melted and starts to bubble. Eat right away! Enjoy.


Quench Your Thirst Every Season

by KineticoAdmin Published 1.14.2016

You've probably already heard the warnings about drinking enough water when the temperature rises. But your body needs an adequate supply of water no matter what the temperature. Even in cooler temperatures, you should make sure you're getting enough water. Dry outside temperatures and heated indoor environments evaporate moisture from your skin and contribute to fluid loss.

Most medical professionals recommend drinking eight glasses of water during an average day. On hot days, or days when you're exceptionally active, you should probably drink more water. And it is especially important to drink water before, during and after exercise.

Not sure if you're getting enough water? Take the following quiz:

  • Do you feel tired even though you've had plenty of rest?
  • Do you easily lose your concentration throughout the day?
  • Are your feet, hands or ankles swollen?
  • Do you cramp up during exercise despite having stretched beforehand?
  • Do you feel thirsty

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, you may be suffering from dehydration. And dehydration can lead to such problems as fatigue, impaired physical ability, weakness, dizziness, headaches as well as other ailments.                                           

These are also signs of dehydration:

  • Dry mouth
  • Marked thirst
  • Infrequent urination
  • Dark yellow urine
  • Sunken eyes
  • Skin lacking elasticity

 

Don't wait until you feel thirsty to have a drink. Doctors recommend drinking before you get thirsty. In fact, by the time you feel thirsty, you are probably already dehydrated. Try to avoid caffeine and alcoholic beverages which act as diuretics. And avoid iced beverages after strenuous activity.  Many people choose to quench their thirst in hot weather with icy drinks; however, ice actually causes blood vessels to shrink, limiting how quickly fluids can be absorbed into the body. For rapid fluid replenishment, drink beverages that are closer to room temperature.

Although you do get water from the foods you eat, drinking water is your best for staying hydrated. It contains no fat, calories or caffeine. And it is absorbed quickly into the body since it doesn't contain any sugar to slow down the absorption process.

So sit back, relax and have a nice drink of water. If you have additional questions about dehydration contact your doctor. 

 

 


Beauty Secret...The Missing Link

by Guest Bloggers Published 12.31.2015

Want to lose weight, have better skin and hair in the new year?  Drink more water. 

Water should become your best friend.  It not only does wonders for your looks; it could be the missing link to your weight loss!  In fact, water will make you look younger.  By flushing out all the impurities in your skin, you will be left with a clear, glowing complexion.  Also, saggy skin due to aging or weight loss will soon look full and luscious when the skin cells are fully hydrated.

Water is also a necessity when it comes to exercising because it helps improve muscle tone.  Many people don't understand why they work out all the time and have a hard time seeing results.  Your muscles need to be hydrated to contract more easily, making your workout more effective, and your desired results more noticeable.

Not drinking enough water may be what is holding you back from losing that little bit of extra weight.  The simple act of drinking the right amount of great tasting, quality water can be extremely beneficial to dieters.  By drinking the right amount of water, your body will perform at its best, burning fat and calories, while allowing the body to metabolize and shed excess fat.

For those of you who are not consuming the amount of water needed for your body, you actually may be increasing your body fat.  When your body gets dehydrated, the body seeks water from other sources, including fat cells.  If your fat cells have less water there is less mobilization of fat for energy.  Also, without water, your kidneys wont be able to function as well, putting extra stress on the liver slowing down its ability to metabolize as much fat as it should. 

Water is also a great substitute for snacking throughout the day.  It naturally suppresses your appetite and helps you digest your food properly.  Increasing your water intake will naturally speed up your metabolism allowing your body to better absorb nutrients from the foods and nutritional supplements you consume each day.  You will have the results of natural, healthy weight loss.

So the next time you are thirsty, try drinking a glass of great tasting Kinetico water.  The right amount just might help you lose weight, look  better and feel great. 

 


Great Tasting Holiday Meals Start With Quality Water

by KineticoAdmin Published 12.3.2015

Even with modern conveniences such as microwaves, automatic bread makers and convection ovens, cooking can consume a lot of time and effort in the kitchen.  However, a simple solution can make a difference in the taste and appearance of prepared foods-quality water.

Most people who own drinking water systems use them strictly for drinking purposes.  But, it would be worth their while to use that quality water for cooking as well.

From soup stock to coffee and tea, clean, clear, quality water lets the vibrant flavor of food and beverages really come through by eliminating the negative smells and tastes sometimes associated with ordinary tap water.

A common element found in tap water, particularly in municipal water systems, that can wreak havoc with your culinary skills, is chlorine.  Although it is essential to disinfect municipal water supplies, chlorine can alter the taste and coloring of foods.

Another snag that may put a damper on your dinner plans, is hard water.  Hardness in water can shrivel steamed vegetables and cause the colors in food to fade.  The ideal method is to blanch vegetables in quality water for five to seven minutes, or just until tender.  This will ensure you get the desired color, texture and flavor from them. 

Pasta is another food that falls prey to hard water.  Noodles cooked in hard water tend to become mushy and clump together.  But with the use of treated water, your pasta dishes will turn out "Magnifico!"

Food is not the only thing that will benefit from treated water.  Fruit juices, coffee, tea and any other beverage made with water will improve because quality water eliminates the need to mask the taste and odor found in tap water.  Also keep in mind that since treated water has nothing to hide, you can add more water and less flavoring to your prepared beverages.

So the next time you are planning that big meal, consider the benefits of having quality water in your home. 

 


Do You Have Dry Skin? Is It the Weather or Your Water?

by KineticoAdmin Published 11.19.2015

With the cold weather upon us, many people will begin to suffer from #DrySkin.  Before spending a fortune on lotions to treat the dry skin, consider ways to prevent dry skin this winter season.  Follow the link below to a great article that explains how your water may be the cause of your dry skin. 

 http://bit.ly/1PVvy4s

 

 


Not All Carbon Is Created Equal

by Abbey R Published 8.13.2015

So, you are interested in a carbon drinking water filtration system?  It may seem like the only choice that you have to make is where you want the filter: on your faucet, under the sink, in your fridge, etc.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.  Each of the systems have different capacities and capabilities.

To hone in on one of the major differences, not all carbon is the same.  To start with, carbon that is used in water purification applications can come from different sources.  Two of the most popular are coconut shell carbon and coal based carbon.  Through processing some of these can be used interchangeably, but not all.

So much of what the carbon will remove is determined when it is processed from the carbon ashes.  The processers can modify the carbon so that different particle sizes are allowed through.  We offer carbon cartridges that range in particle removal capability from 5µm (micron) to 50µm.  For example, 50µm is about half the size of a human hair.  Besides size influences, carbon processors can add a variety of ingredients to help the carbon attract certain contaminants.  Some of the carbon that we use has been formulated to remove contaminants like lead or volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or chloramines, a common disinfectant found in municipal water.

As you are comparing products to purchase it is important to know what the product is going to do for you.  Some filters might be tested and rated to an NSF standard to remove a minimum amount of the contaminant.  Others might be tested by a lab that isn't sanctioned to run NSF standards.  These products would still claim a certain percentage removal of a contaminant, but there wouldn't be a certification seal by NSF or Water Quality Association (WQA).  Still, more may claim that they reduce the amount of a contaminant in your water which could mean anywhere from 1% removal to 99%.  For example, a product may claim to reduce pharmaceuticals and it removes 20% of them.  While that may have seemed like a little bit of a rabbit hole that we jumped into, it is a useful tool for the consumer to know how their system is going to perform.

As tempting as it is, you can't get pulled in by the pretty boxes, catchy taglines or flashy TV commercials.  You either need to do some research ahead of time or read the box closely.  Figure out what contaminants the system removes.  Read how much of each contaminant the system removes.  Learn how long each system is supposed to remove the contaminant.  When you find the system that removes as much as you want of the contaminants that you want for as long as you want, then you can make your purchase with some peace of mind.


The Taste of Your Water Can Make You a Water Snob

by Abbey R Published 6.4.2015

Hi! My name is Abbey, and I am becoming a water snob. Okay, okay! I am a water snob. I can taste the difference between well water, bottled water and municipal water. I can even taste the difference between different brands of bottled water, but I don’t drink it often enough to have a brand preference. I have a hard time drinking water in restaurants when I travel because of the taste. I only drink it if I am really thirsty. So yes, I am a water snob at least when it comes to the water I drink.

Woman Drinking WaterA year or so ago, we finally got around to installing a reverse osmosis system at my house. Before then, I’d like to think I was an average Jane when it came to drinking water, but that wouldn’t be entirely true. I went through a period in college when I could really tell the difference in the types of drinking water. Since I grew up with city supplied water, I never enjoyed the taste of well water. Other than that time period, I would and could drink water from every source and not even notice a difference. 

What makes me think of it now is that I’ve read a couple comments recently that people don’t like the taste of their water when they changed from drinking tap water to drinking filtered water including reverse osmosis (RO) water. Really? You don’t like the taste of water now that you have tasted something closer to actual water?  It seems kind of mind-boggling. I guess it comes down to a couple things.

First, the same compound given to many different people will end in people thinking it tastes differently. While everyone can taste five different things: sweet, salty, sour, savory and bitter, it is perceived differently by different people. Did you know that iron in water tastes sweet to some people, but a bitter metallic taste to others? Copper typically has a metallic taste. For the small percent of people that can taste cyanide, it reminds them of almonds. Chlorides (e.g. sodium chloride aka salt) are also associated with an astringent or salty taste.   Sulfates are known to have a mix of metallic and earthy taste. If you have alkaline or high pH water, it may taste like you are drinking soda water.

The other idea is once you are used to certain impurities being in your water, it is hard to reset your brain to believe that water should taste differently. As a real life example, a colleague of mine had to force his cat to drink RO water. When they first moved into their house, they only had a water softener so the cat got use to that taste. They recently installed an RO system for their drinking water, but the cat wouldn’t drink out of its bowl! It would go to the shower and drink the remains of the water in the shower. Once they devised a method for keeping the cat out the shower, the cat finally started drinking the RO water. It can be hard for animals and humans to get use to a different taste even when you know the water is more pure.  

A random but relevant fact is that cinnamon is completely tasteless. If you plug your nose while eating a piece of hard cinnamon candy, you won’t even know that you are eating cinnamon. Along those lines, what you taste in the water could actually be an odor. Tannins in your water may remind you of dead plants. Sometimes when I turn on my tap water now, I can smell the chlorine in it so I associate it with poor tasting water. Maybe you think your water tastes bad, but it really only smells unpleasant.

Pure water is tasteless. Since all consumable drinking water has a least some small amount of impurities, it will impart some flavor in our food and drinks. Some coffee chains treat the water that goes into their coffee so that it tastes the same no matter where you buy it.  They want the exact same water chemistry at each store so that end product is exactly the same. For more about how water can affect food and drinks check out some of Chef Steve Schimoler’s blogs. Maybe that is why some people think their filtered water doesn’t taste good; their water actually has less of a taste. Drinking water systems strive to provide you the purest water based on its capability which we think tastes pretty awesome!

Contact Abbey R.


Can (and should) you take your water treatment equipment with you when you move?

by Diana M Published 4.29.2015

The purchase of water treatment equipment is an investment in your home. Obvious benefits of water treatment are the aesthetics of conditioned water: clear water, clean fixtures, soft skin and hair, great tasting water. The benefits extend past the aesthetics, though; treating the water can protect the home’s plumbing, faucets, tubs, sinks and water-using appliances from damage caused by problem water.

When it’s time to move, you need to consider what to take on the move and what to leave behind. In the not-too-distant past, appliances were all packaged and moved. Now, often, they are being left in the home as a selling point. So when it comes to your water treatment equipment, is it possible to take it with you, or should you just leave it in the home?

Moving

It is possible to take your water treatment equipment when you move, so the choice is yours. There are a few things to keep in mind, though, when making your decision.

Purchasing a good water treatment system can be a bit more involved than purchasing other appliances. Done properly, the water quality should be accurately measured and the water treatment equipment accurately sized. For the new home buyer, finding that quality water treatment equipment is already in place can be a relief and major selling point. The effects of great water in the home are measurable. A clean toilet tank can be a solid indicator of the care previously provided the home. The buyer may realize that they can move in with assurance that the water is one less thing to think about while settling in.

For the seller, your love of the great water might inspire you to take the water treatment equipment with you. You’ll want to investigate the water at your new location before making this decision. Confirm that both the size of the new home and the water quality at the new home are within operating parameters of the equipment you plan to take with you. A water treatment expert in the area of the new home can help with this information, or a water treatment report from the new municipality can be shared with the original installing water expert and they can help determine if the current products are viable for the new site. They can also disconnect and package the equipment for a safe journey to their new home.

We understand that great water could have you ready to disconnect that softener yourself, but it’s best to invest some time and do your homework before making your decision. Happy trails!

Contact Diana M.


Kids and Drinking Water

by Brian L Published 7.31.2014

Ew, Yuck! That is the commentary I received from my five year-old when he tasted the contents of the bedtime cup of water I brought for him. I filled it from the new state-of-the-art carbon filter I recently installed in our upstairs bathroom. We have a Kinetico reverse-osmosis drinking water system downstairs in the kitchen, but I was getting tired of going down nearly every night to refill the boys’ water cups. So when the opportunity presented itself, I thought installing a filter upstairs would save me a few extra steps each night. No such luck. I cannot even sneak it past them. They can instantly tell the difference in taste, and will not drink the water from upstairs.

Boy drinking from water fountain

It is not that our water is necessarily bad-tasting; it is just that the water treated with reverse osmosis is that much better. I recall my daughter asking me why our water tastes so much better than the water at her school. They really can taste the difference, as can my wife and I. And, we’ve had guests from out of town comment on how wonderful our coffee tastes. I’m quick to remind them that it is probably not the coffee, but rather the water that went into it.

So apparently we’ve spoiled our children. They’ve come to appreciate and expect really good drinking water. I guess there are much worse things we could have spoiled them with. Interestingly enough though, the quality of the water is not so important to the boys when it is coming out of a drinking fountain. If they spot a drinking fountain, they instantly become thirsty and will drink heartily. Perhaps to save those steps at night I need to install a drinking fountain upstairs. Except that usually after drinking from a fountain they have dripped water all over themselves and the floor and are now soaking wet. Oh well, boys will be boys.

Contact Brian L.


Fluoride in Your Drinking Water—How Much is Too Much?

by Diana M Published 3.21.2014

I frequently get calls from people asking about fluoride in their water. Some people call about removing the fluoride, and some call about making sure it remains in their water supply. These opposing opinions piqued my curiosity about fluoride. What is it? How does it get into the water supply? Should it be removed, or is it a good thing to have in your drinking water?

It turns out there are mountains of documentation available on the subject of fluoride, but two points really stayed with me. First, there are all sorts of natural sources of fluoride in addition to intentionally fluoridated water and toothpaste. I had no idea! Second, the debate about the pros and cons of fluoride is endless.

Illustration of smiling girl pointing to a glass of water

As Ed R says in this his post, fluoride can be found naturally in water, food and the atmosphere. In fact, it’s the 13th most abundant element found on earth. 5 major global fluoride belts run through the earth, transversing approximately 31 countries. A percentage of this fluoride is soluble, and ends up in the water supply—even the oceans contain some fluoride.

Fluoride can also be found in the atmosphere. Some of it comes from airborne dust with naturally occurring fluoride, and some comes from industry.

Additionally, fertilizers, pesticides and fungicides used on fruits and vegetables usually contain a level of fluoride. If you’re one of the folks trying to keep your exposure to a minimum, giving the fruits and vegetables a good washing can remove most of the fluoride from produce. Choosing organic produce also eliminates exposure to the pesticides that leave fluoride residues.

So, if I have so much fluoride exposure naturally, why are some water supplies fluoridated intentionally? Well, as early as the late 1800’s, it was noted that children exposed to higher doses of naturally occurring fluoride had healthier teeth. At that time, several studies were launched both overseas and in the US which showed that fluoride’s presence in the mouth could prevent tooth decay. Adding fluoride to water supplies seemed to be the logical approach to dental health, because it resembled the natural method of exposure.

The United States is one of few countries that add fluoride on a consistent basis. Here, the decision to add fluoride to the water is up to the city or town. Grand Rapids, MI was the first city to add fluoride to the water supply in 1945, and many cities and towns followed suit until recently, in 2012, 72% of the US received fluoridated water from their municipalities. But in 2011, approximately 200 cities and towns in the US decided to stop adding fluoride to the water. Not only would removing the fluoride cut costs, but more data was becoming available on the negative aspects of overexposure to fluoride.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), children have the highest risk of over exposure. In a household, the child and adult may consume the same levels of fluoride, but because of the child’s body size and weight, the same dosage can be an overexposure. Children overexposed to fluoride will have “fluorosis”—pittingand/or grey discoloration—of the teeth. One of the concerns of overexposure to adults is bone degradation. It’s believed that too much fluoride will actually weaken bone density. Organizations monitoring the use of fluoride all recommend that we have conversation with our dentists and physicians regarding our personal limits.

According to the World Health Organization, the average adult is naturally exposed to approximately .6 milligrams of fluoride per day using an un-fluoridated water supply. Their target exposure guidelines suggest that .8-1.2 milligrams per litre per day will maximize the benefits of fluoride and minimize any possible harmful effects. In the US, the EPA has set a maximum contamination level of 4 milligrams per liter per day. If you’re not sure whether your water is fluoridated or how much fluoride it might contain, you can check with your water supplier. They will have published detailed reports about the contents of your water.

Now, when people call about fluoride in their water, I know more about what they might be thinking. As with anything found in and around water, we at Kinetico encourage you to learn about the water in your home and how it affects your life. Take charge of the water you drink, as your body is the ultimate water filter.

Contact Diana M.


Water: Understand it, Value it, Respect it. Learn more about life’s most vital resource.

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