Tips For Eating Green and Why You Should
Posted by Catherine Morgan on May 12, 2009
Have you ever wondered how the foods we choose to eat each day effects our carbon footprint? You might be surprised to find out just how much it does.
But, do we all have to start growing our own food and become vegetarians to save our planet?
No. Even if we just make one or two changes in our eating and purchasing habits, we can each begin to make a positive impact on our environment. So…I’m going to give you several tips on little things we can all do to help us get on the path to greener eating.
Before we do that, lets take some time to address how our food choices are affecting our carbon footprint. Here is an interesting tool to help you calculate the carbon footprint of your diet…
With every meal you eat, you have the power to reduce climate change.
The Bon Appétit Management Company Low Carbon Diet Calculator is designed to allow you to compare the relative carbon impacts of your food choices.
Once we become aware of how our food choices are contributing to global warming, we can then look for ways to reduce our impact. Here are a few tips to consider…
Tip One – Buying local is more important than buying organic…
If you shop at a farmer’s market, talk to your vendors and see if they use eco-friendly agricultural methods–many of the farmers I have talked to do so because they recognize the importance of keeping their land healthy. Consider buying non-organic locally grown produce over non-local organic produce, if you can determine that it was grown conscientiously.
There is a lot of information available on buying food locally at Big Green Purse…
Find Good Food Near You. Want fresh, locally grown food, but don’t know where to find it? The Local Harvest community level map makes it easy to locate sustainable farmers, farmers markets and Community Supported Agriculture projects (CSAs) in your area. You can click on a map or enter your zip code to get quick results.
Tip Two – Reduce your intake of meat…
The FAO report found that current production levels of meat contribute between 14 and 22 percent of the 36 billion tons of “CO2-equivalent” greenhouse gases the world produces every year. It turns out that producing half a pound of hamburger for someone’s lunch a patty of meat the size of two decks of cards releases as much greenhouse gas into the atmosphere as driving a 3,000-pound car nearly 10 miles.
From Cool Food Facts…
Reduce your impact on global warming by eating vegetarian for a day. Worldwide, meat and dairy production account for 9% of carbon dioxide emissions, 65% of nitrous oxide emissions,and 37% of methane emissions.
How far would you be willing to go to eat green and contribute to saving our planet? Would you consider making a commitment to not eating meat on Mondays? Check out this video…
Tip Three – Consider trying some “faux meats” – these are plant based products used to imitate meat products. If you haven’t tried any of these types of products recently, it might be worth giving them a second look.
When I was growing up, most fake meat products were pretty grim. Rubbery, spongy, or just plain bland, they were generally avoided at all costs. Today, however, a visit to the health food market or many supermarkets presents a vastly expanded and improved selection of faux sausages, burgers, “chicken” patties, ground “beef,” and more. (Chinese and Taiwanese markets often have their own comprehensive range of imitation meats from duck to lobster, many of them colored and shaped to resemble the real thing.) Most of these are made from soy protein.
Let’s face it, these products are an “acquired” taste, and many of us will find it impossible to acquire it. But remember, these food products are usually low in fat while being high in protein, and (if you can tolerate the unusual taste sensation) this can make them an important part of a healthy diet.
Tip Four – Purchase foods with as little packaging as possible.
From Cool Food Facts…
The food processing and packaging sector is one of the top 5 users of energy in the U.S., using almost 14 billion gallons of gasoline every year.
Here are a couple more quit tips…
Tip Five — Freeze leftovers rather than tossing them in the garbage.
Tip Six — Buy in bulk.
Tip Seven — Take a buddy with you when you go shopping at the grocery store or local farmers market. Why take two cars, when you could both get there in one?
Tip Eight — Plan out your meals in advance, and only buy what you need.
In general, choosing to eat green is also choosing to eat healthy. So whether you are choosing to do it for your personal health or your planet…It’s a good thing.
Here are some tips from Lindsay’s Green Living Blog – How To Eat Green on a Budget…
Every time we look at the evening news we get a swift reminder that times are tough and for a great deal of us, wallets are getting tighter. The current recession is certainly affecting a lot of us and we are being advised to spend wisely by making smart choices on how we spend our hard earned dollars.
When it comes to green living, it is often assumed that eating green, especially choosing expensive organic foods, is a luxury that we just cannot afford anymore.
I would like to offer a few valuable suggestions on how you CAN continue to eat green, and stick within your budget.
- From 61 Days To Better Health — Eating Healthy, The Green Way
- From greenlagirl — Cooking Green
- From Crunchy Chicken — Sustainable Food Challenge
- From Eco-Veg Footprint – What Is Eating Green Anyway?
- The Cool Food Campaign
- From VegCooking Blog – Top Five Tips For Eating Green
- From Peaching Green – Eat Green