What is the difference between the Atla System and reverse osmosis?

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Minerals & Health

Atla selectively removes contaminants while preserving the beneficial minerals. Reverse osmosis removes nearly all the beneficial minerals. In fact, the reverse osmosis process removes 92-99% of beneficial calcium and magnesium.

Drinking water without minerals has been scientifically proven to cause numerous health problems. So much so that the World Health Organization has issued a warning about consuming RO water.

Some reverse osmosis systems add some minerals back in. On this trend the World Health Organization state that "possibly none of the commonly used ways of re-mineralization could be considered optimum since the water does not contain all of its beneficial components. In the case of borderline deficiency of a given element, even the relatively low intake of the element with drinking water may play a relevant protective role."


The ability of water to hydrate has several factors including the mineral content of the water. Atla also conditions the water by creating vortical flow. This results in a lighter mouthfeel. Additionally, you can drink a large volume at once and it just disappears. Drinking a large volume of RO water, you'll notice that it seems to slosh around in the stomach for a very long time comparatively.

Waste, Installation & Maintenance

Reverse osmosis systems waste 3-20 gallons of water for every gallon of purified water they produce, under typical operating conditions. Don't be confused by RO system ratings. Those ratings are the efficiency with no backpressure in the system, i.e. not filling a pressure tank. However, reverse osmosis systems produce water so slowly they need a pressure tank, and as the pressure tank fills it becomes less and less efficient. Most people only take a glass of drinking water at a time from a reverse osmosis system, so it is nearly always operating at the worst efficiency possible.

The Atla System wastes no water and produces water so quickly that you can connect it to the cold water side of your existing kitchen faucet. No additional faucet required. No drilling through the countertop. It's also much simpler to install and maintain.

Capacity & Flow

Atla Systems never run out of water and flow continuously at one gallon per minute. RO systems flow slowly and then even more slowly as the pressure tank runs out of water.


RO water is typically slightly acidic, unlike mountain spring water. It has a sharp, acidic taste that isn't natural. Atla Water tastes vibrant and has a lighter mouthfeel. Our customers rave about the taste in their Atla Water reviews. If you are a coffee or tea fan you're going to love the taste improvement with Atla.

Cooking & Handwashing

Boiling foods in RO water causes much nutrition to be washed away. Also, this demineralized water dries hands much worse than tap water with chemicals. Cooking with Atla Water preserves the nutrition content of the foods. Washing your hands in Atla is simply luxurious.