Why Getting Water from a Spring Doesn’t Make Sense

by Bob McCauley, CNC, MH

Raw foodists and natural health advocates ignored the importance of water to our health completely until quite recently.  Most barely mentioned it and when they did they bowed to the notion that purified water was the best water to drink because it was “pure”, which it is.  That’s the problem with it: pure water leaches minerals from the body.

The latest fad is “Harvesting Raw Water from a Wild Spring”. And this is a fad indeed.  I wrote about this about a year ago and I find more and more people are doing it and when you challenge them things get nasty quick and they start insulting you.    The raw food community as embraced natural spring that can only be taken from the actual source in glass jugs and carboys.  Essentially I have nothing against the practice other than I find it to be an absolute waste of gas and time, even if you live close to the spring itself.  Not to mention I wouldn’t consider consuming unfiltered water unless it was the only water I could find, which I could only imagine would be an emergency situation.

There are four of these public springs in Michigan.  I live in Lansing and the closest one to my home is 1:15 minutes, next is 1:25 mins. Am I supposed to drive 2.5 hours and waste 3 hours every week or even once a month?   As though I have nothing better to do than to drive for hours for water when I have something far better coming from my tap.  I have a 200 ft rock well at my house that draws water from the sandstone Saginaw Formation.  I triple filter it and you will not find better water.

I have had 18 years in the bottled water business. My father held an MIT Doctorate in Environmental engineering and I learned the business of water from him (12 years with Wolverine Engineers, Mason, MI).  I am a Certified water specialist D5/S5 in the State of Michigan.  In all my years in the water business never heard the term Raw water or Wild spring until the last couple years.  These terms have been invented by individuals who want to sound like they have found something new, when in fact they have found something quite old and outdated for the most part.  The civilized world said goodbye to unfiltered water many years ago because filtration is to water what antiseptics are to open wounds.  When antiseptics were invented it was a giant leap forward toward stopping infection and filtering water removed all the stuff that you find in water that doesn’t belong in the body.

The days when we use to have travel some distance to get water ended first with the Romans then again by The West beginning in the 19th century.

Filtration has become a BIG “No No”. Spring water is not filtered, which all water should be.  Water filtration is one of the greatest advances in the last 50 years.  We have been filtering water for 4000 years because people understood that we require clean water.  Filtration has now become a dirty word because the same people such as David Wolfe and Daniel Vitalis are both promoting as well as selling it.  I did a video rebuttal to some of David’s ideas about water, which I find absolutely absurd. I also see others in the raw food movement being duped into believing that going into the middle of nowhere to get water from a spring will actually make you healthier.  If you look up Raw Water in Wikipedia you see that in its definition it warns: “Raw water should not be considered safe for drinking or washing without further treatment.”  Since the term was recently invented there are no citations and almost no information about Raw water.  And just because it comes from a spring does NOT by any means suggest that it automatically is high quality.   You will have no idea what you are actually drinking unless you see the analysis.  And if you want to know if it is contaminated you need to do a full spectrum analysis (such as I do on the well source of the water I sell every three years), and that will cost you $3000.

Those who promote drinking unfiltered water do so because they claim that water spins from deep within the earth as it reaches the surface and there is no truth to this.  It would be nearly impossible to prove that water actually spins as it rises to the surface.  They also say the water as Victor Schauberger stated that nature creates vortices as a result of a tremendous and sudden release of energy.  A tornado is a good example of this.  But water spinning as it rises toward the surface of the earth is unfounded and improvable.  It’s another idea that has been invented out of thin air.

Harvesting Water: Another Invented Term. While you are inventing new terms such as “Wild Spring” and “Raw Water” why not invent the term “Harvesting Water” from nature.

Glass vs. Plastic. Another thing being pushed is that the water should be “harvested” in glass.  Glass is recommended and desirable, but incredibly impractical given their weight and how dangerous they can become if you drop one.   Again we seem to be going back in time before plastic had been invented.  There was the BPA (Bisphenol A) scare with polycarbonate but now the standard is BPA-Free.  The amount of plastic that could possibly leach into the water is a minuscule amount of toxins compared to breathing the air at the gas station while you’re filling up or riding behind a diesel truck or bus.

The Incredible Weight of Glass.  A 5 gallon plastic bottle weighs less than one pound, 43 lb filled with water.  A 5 gallon glass bottle (carboy) weighs 32 lbs, 75 lbs filled with water.

Completely Misleading. It is essentially misleading to suggest that ONLY unfiltered spring water should be consumed.  Water has been filtered for more than 4000 years because people understood that the importance of taking stuff out of water that doesn’t belong there is quite important.  Now we are told that only unfiltered water should be consumed.  It’s ridiculous to suggest it should not be.  Any bottled water sold in the United States MUST be filtered.  I entered the bottled water business in 1993 it was the first thing I learned.  Water that will be bottled must be ozonated and filtered.

Water does not levitate. There is a false claim that water “magically and mysteriously” levitates to the surface by “fructagenic” energy only understood through sacred geometry.  It derives from a misunderstanding of the work of Viktor Schauberger’s work on energy found in nature.

“Water is Alive” is a concept embraced by many people out there and I’ve found that stating an opposite opinion to that sentiment brings howls of derision and bitter, nasty personal comments.  The reason for this is that these people have made a religion out of water and you are attacking their religion.  I am a Christian and when you attack Christianity I don’t reply to the personal vituperative attack.  Turning an inanimate object into a god or an otherwise living being is called animism.  Water is not god.  It is not living and it does not have consciousness.  David Wolfe has stated that “water has more consciousness than Jesus or Buddha.”  It certainly does not.  Daniel Vitalis goes along with this notion and it’s an absurd Gaia concept that promotes the inanimate as something living. Water is the healthiest substance we can consume, but it does not levitate, it is not alive and it does not have consciousness.  I’m tired of hearing that it does.  And I’m tired of people making a religion out of it.


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About Bob McCauley

Bob McCauley, ND (Robert F., Jr.) was raised in Lansing, Michigan and attended Michigan State University (BA, 1980 in Journalism). He is a naturopathic doctor, Master Herbalist and a Certified Nutritional Consultant. He has traveled extensively, both domestically and abroad, visiting over 32 countries. He published Confessions of a Body Builder: Rejuvenating the Body with Spirulina, Chlorella, Raw Foods and Ionized Water (2000), Achieving Great Health (2005), The Miraculous Properties of Ionized Water, (2006) which is the only book on the market that exclusively addresses Ionized Water, Twelve (Fiction, 2007) and Honoring the Temple of God (2008). He considers himself a Naturalist, meaning he pursues health in the most natural way possible. He studies and promotes nature as the only way to true health. From 2002-2004 he hosted the radio program Achieving Great Health, which was heard by thousands of people each day. His guests included some of the most well-known and respected names in the natural health world. With the help of his father, Dr. Robert F. McCauley, Sr. (Doctorate in Environmental Engineering, MIT, 1953) they started Spartan Water Company in 1992, which sold vended water machines in supermarkets. Robert Jr. founded Spartan Enterprises, Inc. in 1993. He is a Certified Water Technician with the State of Michigan. He is also a Type II Public Water Supply Specialist and has the certifications of S-5 and D-5. The McCauley family has a long history in the water industry. Bob's father pioneered environmental issues regarding ground water and drinking water quality. He received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1953 for his thesis on removing radioactive strontium from water. He earned his doctorate in Environmental Engineering in less than 2 years, one of the shortest doctoral studies in the history of MIT. He taught civil, sanitary and environmental engineering at Michigan State University for 18 years before retiring to run Wolverine Engineers & Surveyors of Mason, Michigan, for 17 years. His reputation throughout Michigan as a water quality expert was legendary. Bob worked for his father's company for 12 years learning the water business, which dealt primarily with municipalities, including water quality and sanitary sewer issues. After apprenticing with his father, Bob moved on to the bottled water business. He established greater Michigan's biggest selling bottled water: Michigan Mineral – Premium Natural Water. He was introduced to Ionized Water in 1995 and has done more to promote Ionized Water than anyone else in the industry. Bob often lectures and offers seminars on his Seven Component Natural Health Protocol . Bob is a Certified Nutritional Consultant and a Certified Master Herbalist. He is also a 3rd Degree Black Belt and Certified Instructor of Songahm Taekwondo (American Taekwondo Association).
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14 Responses to Why Getting Water from a Spring Doesn’t Make Sense

  1. Scott says:

    Hey Bob,

    Wow man I’m glad you posted this, I was just about to go find a spring and possibly pick up Giardia from the water. I’m curious though, as an independent health researcher I like to look at all facets of human health and my newest experiment was going to be water. Are you saying there no health benefits to spring water at all? Is there even such a thing as clean water in terms of supporting human health and bad water that contributes to chronic disease. http://www.carlsbadalkalinewater.com/carlsbad-alkaline-water.html would these be ok because it is FDA regulated? I’m aware that the “water” cure is just another dogmatic raw food wives tale but my curiosity gets the best of me and I always like experimenting (i.e the milk diet, low carb, intuitive eating etc) I got turned on to water when my buddy got that kangen water where you can change the PH and his back problems cleared up almost immediately. Once again I know the sample size is one in this instance but my curiosity is getting the best of me(like it always does). What type of water do tribal people like the kitavans or iniut drink. Or how about the mountainous people of Switzerland before WWII, what did they drink? I’m just trying to figure out where people got their water from prior to the disastrous health statistics we see today in industrialized countries, any info would be much appreciated. I’m assuming ( and I know I shouldn’t do that) that they got their water from springs and wells but then there is always the the risk of contamination. Does this risk of contamination out way the loss of minerals if any are lost at all during filtration? I guess I’m asking If I want to do my water experiment, a basic 30 day challenge kinda like morgan spurlocks super size me, what would be the water to do it with? I think you are a proponent of ionized water but I read in several places that it is a scam, but who I am…just a noob to this whole water business.

  2. Hoi says:

    I am curious what you opinion is on how people naturally obtained water before all this advent of technology. Did we naturally have water treatment and filtration methods or were our ancient ancestors more adept at drinking untreated water? Google sources say water treatment started sometime around 2000BC. But what about before then? Surely humans must have drank water as nature delivered it to us before the advent of even primitive technology.

    Been harvesting spring water for one year now. Was getting sick twice a month before. Now that is has been one year, I just got a seasonal cold in the last week, which is much more acceptable than getting sick twice a month before. These were the results I had inadvertently attained, which I did not expect when I initially started harvesting water. One day I just realized ‘wow, I haven’t been sick in several months!’
    How do you explain that? Was doing the superfoods and raw foods for a year before that, and the only factor that has changed was the water. Before, I was drinking filtered water from a Zero Water system.

    Thanks for your response

  3. Chris says:

    Hi Bob, thanks for sharing your opinion. Are you familiar with the work of Dr. Masuru Emoto? If not I ink you’d enjoy learning about his 25+ years of studying water. Also, water is “alive”, it in fact stores memory. This may be difficult for you to accept but there is plenty of evidence of how this is true. Water that is considered alive is water that has a crystalline molecuar structure, water has this when it has been filtered for a very long time using the oldest filter of all – earth. Springs are the purest source of this filtered water and ideally havent been exposed to the types of contaminates city water has. City water is dead water, often recycled up to 9 times before being released from the water system. Water systems are often pumped with heavy metals and toxins, fluoride for example – which has been banned in many countries around the world. Fluoride is actually linked to a plethora of mental health risks. Anyhow, I won’t ramble any further, just know that your experience in water means little as scientists are still learning more and more about it and still don’t understand it fully. It’s that “magical”.

  4. Chris says:

    Here’s a great doc talking about structured water: http://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=related&v=taQUrkB0nPQ

  5. Richard says:

    Hi Bob,

    It seems you are really against spring water but failed to mention a practical solution. There are absolutely TONS of different filter options, etc. I’d say more but it doesn’t look like you reply to comments.


  6. Carmen says:

    Bob, have you looked at Dr Patrick Flanagan’s work? he has been studying water for over 30 years. I enjoy how he describes scientifically how/why water can be good/bad for you. I read your article open minded, but I feel Dr Flanagan presents more evidence for his theories and seems more credible then a guy who has been in the water processing business all his life. I agree your personal water sounds great. Is that the stuff that is being bottle?

  7. James says:

    I dissagree with you. Filtering water takes out copper, iron, zinc, and alot of other good minerals that the body needs. I remember when orange juice was legal that was not pasterized -but because one or more person got sick -The do gooders and politically correct people out there without any vote from the people whatsoever decided to make crazy laws saying that orange juice must be boiled before it can be sold. NOW WHY IS IT WHAN I BUY ORANGES IN THE STORE THAT AREN’T HARD BOILED THAT I DON’T GET SICK. So when people jump to making crazey laws then everyone suffers. Now if I want good orange juice then I have to import my orange jucie because USA orange juice sucks. Soon there will be a laws making unfiltered water illegal because once again someone is going to get a tummy ake and sue everyone involved. Then once again the policically correct people will go fast forward with crazy laws. Unfiltered water is better then filtered water like all water was back in the good old days when I could taste the rocks. SO DON’T DARE LIE TO ME AND THE PEOPLE

  8. Andy Adams says:

    You just can’t believe anyone who believes in god. Think about it. If you cant prove it I certainly can’t believe it.

  9. Matt says:

    The amount of toxins from man far outweighs whats in spring water the earth supports man and knows what humans need filters don’t remove radiation contaminants or even flouride naturally structured EARTH water is what the planet meant for us to drink if we were not so sick from chemtrail a and pollutants our body’s could handle the spring water just fine it’s natural.

  10. Kayla says:

    I’m a Christian and I believe that God means for us to take and use his creation the way he gives it, in it’s natural state. Why would we mess with something perfect? That’s ridiculous. BTW, my husband goes twice a month to the spring and fills up our four 5-gallon polyethelene containers. You don’t have to use glass. Stainless steel might be another option though.

    I fail to see how saying water is alive is contradictory to being a Christian. Is it the same if I say flowers are alive . . . because they are.

  11. Caleb says:


    The first thing I read was that you are in the “business of water”. A key word is business. Being for profit and nothing else but maybe some longevity in the business.

    Water is living as much and if not more that you and me, I drink spring water everyday because I love life.


    If water is the topic, then stick to subject matter, Water

  13. scott scu says:

    This article was completely useless and did not convince me to not drink spring water… after reading this i’ll continue to drink spring water.

    the most ridiculous statement… dont drink spring water because the containers are to heavy and might be dangerous. wow this guys a joke

  14. Shefik says:

    Wow you say my god is real but yours isn’t. In my mind everything is alive, everything is god. The rivers, the sun, the stars, the plants, the mountains, everything. The is no way to prove that water does not have consciousness, the same way that I actually cannot prove that you are conscious. You could spin the argument of consciousness to near pointlessness. Which it is pointless, in my opinion. But why bring in your religion so forcefully and put down other peoples religion?

    I do agree that you should check your well and spring water before drinking it, unless if you are desperate moment or lost in the wilderness. Then I would say drink from a spring before drinking from a river. Eat juice edible plant, (if you know about edible plants), before drinking from springs. In my area I could get water from tapping sycamores and grape vines, and from eating nopale cactus.

    While volunteering in Costa Rica I drank “Raw water” from a springs, from rivers, and from wells. I was not informed that it was such water. I said if the locals drink it, I’ll drink it. Later I found out it was unfiltered and not once did I get sick fortunately. One of the guys would even drink straight from the river, he said he has been doing so since he was child with no I’ll effect, so maybe his body was used to it.

    But when I was in El Salvador, I have some family members there and they said Don’t drink the water at all. Drink only bottled water. He said a lot of people get kidney problems and he thinks it’s the water.

    Same goes for when I rode my bike through west texas. All the locals said you would get diarrhea if you drink tap. Even the wells are contaminated with arsenic and all sorts of stuff from the cotton farms.

    Anyways my point is that it all depends where you are! So do your research!

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