The need for clean water is undeniable, especially in a serious survival situation. After all, you can probably live for a while without food, but the body simply cannot function without water for more than a couple of days. Plus, it is needed not only for drinking, but also cooking, cleaning, and sanitizing. The problem is that even if water is available during or after a disaster situation, it might not be clean or filtered in order to ensure its safety. Fortunately, there is an interesting and unique idea for helping filter and clean your available water supplies.
Banana Peels for Water Filtration
Yes, in a pinch banana peels can be used to filter water. The main reason for this is due to the fact that they contain a number of acids and other molecules capable of purifying hydrogen and oxygen. Better still, these molecules are not at all harmful to humans. Specifically, banana peels contain sulfur, nitrogen, carboxylic acid and other atoms that function pretty much the same way magnets do in terms of attracting heavy metals. This is great news since heavy metals are one of the biggest problems in terms of water contamination. Some of these metals that can be found in unpurified water include lead, copper, mercury, and iron. These are lethal to humans, building up slowly in our bodies and eventually leading to brain and nervous system damage. Heavy metals in water are generally positively charged and the carboxylic acid ions in the banana peels become negatively charged. The two compounds are drawn towards each other just like with a magnet.
How to Filter Water with Banana Peels
The best suggestion for actually using this method is to dry the peels a bit. You really only need a few hours for the banana peels to dry. Then, you can either cut them into small chunks or put them into a food processor and make a kind of dust or meal by grinding them down a bit. Of course in a survival or SHTF situation, you might not have the luxury of a food processor or electricity to operate it. Take the cut up peels or powder and put them into a coffee filter or even a cheesecloth. Pour the water to be filtered through them. The water that comes through the makeshift filter should be pretty much clean and heavy metal free.
Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Banana Peel Water filter
Use a dehydrator to dry the peels of a banana (or more).
Place dried peels into a food processor or dice finely with a sharp knife. The peels can be in the form of a powder or small chunks, whichever is preferred.
Fill a coffee filter or cheesecloth with the cut up peels.
Simply pour the water through the filter and enjoy a freshly filtered container of water.
Additionally, you may wish to secure the filter shut and store for later use instead of using the filter immediately. Generally, a banana peel filter can be used several times.
An even more effective filtration method is to put the peels or chunks into the water directly. Then, you simply allow them to sit for about ten minutes or so. Studies have shown that ten minutes is the magic number, with longer periods of time not showing any significant additional effects. From here, just take a clean fish net (if using the powder) or spoon to remove the peels. If none of these are available, or you just want to be sure you have removed all of the powder, pour it through a strainer or another filter.
Banana peels can actually be used in this manner up to 8 times, although you will certainly want to clean or rinse them off in between uses. Also, while this is effective at removing heavy metals, you should still use water purification tablets for killing bacteria.
Interesting, but in a SHTF situation, banana peels would be best reserved as a food source rather than as water filtration. Many people eat peels usually boiled to improve taste. Personally I dice them and add them to stews. But I also waste no part of any plant when possible, stems of many plants as well as seeds can be prepared properly to be eaten. As can many parts of vegetables people throw out. Shattered bones from meat can offer nutrients from stewed marrow. Of course, some things should not be eaten, such as apple seeds which are mildly toxic if crushed. But knowledge is everything, and in a perfect world, waste should be nothing. So it's good to know the peels I eat could be clearing any dangerous metals out of my bowels as well as providing extra carbs, as well as various nutrients including potassium (though not quite as much as the banana itself) Thanks for the added banana peel info though :)
I think Aydonis has a great point about the peels being better used as a food source rather than a water filter in many cases... However we all know that we can go weeks without food and water is essential pretty much everyday. So with that said, it depends a lot on your situation. If the only water you have available is very questionable, then the peels might be of more use to help filter it rather than getting a few more calories and nutrients from eating it. But then again that's making the assumption that this technique really does work. I would need to see more evidence to be fully convinced,
This is very useful. I am doing a plant filter and this is very good
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We intend using banana peels as stated above . Now how do we demonstrate the purity / portable quality of the filtered water?