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Old 26.11.2012, 16:43
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Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

I've had my colon removed one year ago this month. Over the past year it has been a roller coaster of learning about what I can/can’t eat. Something that affects me one day may not affect me the next and it’s turned out to be a constant struggle. I’ve come to Switzerland on a long holiday to visit friends and love it so much am hoping to stay longer. I’ve always been known to drink a significant amount of water and since the day I arrived my stomach has been so much worse than normal. For the past month, I’ve been trying to isolate what I’m eating to figure out what is making me this way and the only thing I can figure out is the tap water. Bottled water; however, esp that with gas, seems to be just fine which makes absolutely no sense. I know this is the land with perfect water but does anyone have any suggestions or has anyone heard of such a thing? Am I losing my mind?!
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Old 26.11.2012, 16:51
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Maybe it is the hard water or the chalk in it, and welcome to the forum.

Will you be drinking Swiss tap water?
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Old 26.11.2012, 17:26
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

I suppose the obvious thing is stop drinking the tap water and see if that helps.
I hope the rest of your stay is happy and healthy, and welcome to EF!
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Old 26.11.2012, 18:24
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Thank You for the kind welcome. I have, of course, kept the tap water drinking to only when I have no other option but chalk is not something I had considered and may be a huge factor. I wondered why when I drank a glass of water there was immedately a little white powder at the bottom of the glass that never appeared when drinking anything else. I assumed it was dishwashing liquid. I feel a little stupid now.
I'm not sure my surgeon would have any clue back home since "chalk" would not be a factor but I'm going to throw it out at him and do some further research but I feel much better now that there might actually be a substance that I'm having an issue with. Thanks again.
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Old 26.11.2012, 19:08
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

The residue in the water here is mainly calcium and magnesium. They're both safe to drink, but if you find it's affecting your system, you might switch to bottled water.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hard_water

The other alternative, more eco-friendly and cheaper in the long run, is to filter your tap water through a Brita filter. This will remove the minerals in the water and hopefully resolve your problems.
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Old 26.11.2012, 19:19
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Sorry to hear about your colon -- you look way too young (from your profile pic) to have that befall you!

I wouldn't usually expect to see a white powder (dry?) in the bottom of my glass of water. I wonder if there is already some sort of residue in the glass before you drink? The tap water here is essentially mineral water (as Village Idiot points out) --it's not fluoridated anywhere in Switzerland -- and should be not dissimilar to the bottled mineral water you're drinking otherwise. That's also "hard" water due to quantities of calcium and other minerals present in bottled mineral water.

As others have suggested, you'll only find out if it's the water affecting you if you exclude it from your diet for a while. If symptoms improve, try introducing filtered tap water.

And welcome to EF! Enjoy your stay in Switzerland.
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Old 26.11.2012, 23:02
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Mr HH also has chunks of colon (large and small) missing. My sympathies for the roller coaster

It could be that the water here has different minerals (more or less) than the tap water in your home country...and your system is sulking at the different mix.

However, not wanting to be alarmist, but I hope you have also ruled out a change in your health giving new problems?
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Old 26.11.2012, 23:46
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

it could also be some other trace mineral. mineral water varies quite a bit wrt trace minerals, so I don't see why tap water shouldn't as well.

anyway, I wish you health!
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Old 10.12.2012, 17:30
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

As others have said, it could be other chemicals in the water. Do they fluoridate the water here? If so, it could be that or some other chemical they introduce. In some areas I have been to, not in switzerland, the water has given me terrible indigestion and gas, so it could be the water.

Maybe have an allergy test or at least investigate whether it would be worth having one?

Allergies can be to anything from toothpaste to MSG or anything else. Since your body has had a big disruption to its normal functioning, it may react differently to others. It has to make up for the lost part of the colon which would have been performing some useful function prior to it being removed.
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Old 10.12.2012, 19:38
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Maybe it isn't the water at all. It could be that you are eating more of the delicious bread here and you have developed a sensitivity to gluten..Or maybe it is all the great Swiss dairy products...
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Old 10.12.2012, 20:54
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Hi, sorry about your colon.

No you are not losing your mind. I have travelled a lot and have always noticed the difference to my digestion etc because of change in water.

Yes Switzerland is the land of clean water, but that is not the problem.

Different parts of Switzerland get their water from different sources.

I am in Thurgau near the Bodensee when we get our water bill, our Town has listed as either, hard, soft or in-between, we get the middle one, in-between.

So far my favourite tap water for Taste is from a town, name Davos in Graubünden, that is high up in the mountains.
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Old 10.12.2012, 21:20
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Perhaps you are getting too much calcium? I do believe there are high levels calcium in the water here, as evidenced by the white residue (calc) left behind. Symptoms of too much calcium include:

nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, dry mouth, thirst, constipation and frequent urination.
Just a thought.

I hope you feel better soon!
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Old 11.12.2012, 15:24
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Re: Very Sensitive Digestive System- Problem with Tap Water?

Quote:
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Do they fluoridate the water here?
No.
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