Why Clean Eating Supports Our Planet
Happy Earth Day!
Food is our closest connection to the earth. We humans are truly only as healthy as our planet. Think about it. The quality of our soil impacts the nutrient density of our fruits and vegetables. The health of the air we breathe and water we drink directly impacts our well-being and longevity.
In celebration of earth day here are a few tips to bring with you grocery shopping and dining to keep our planet (and your body) healthy.
Eat More Plants
Getting your daily dose of 4-5 servings of veggies, plus 3-4 servings of fruit a day is a task in itself. Not only will focusing on a more plant-based diet support your personal health, but the health of the planet. We use eight times as much land to feed livestock as we do to feed humans. This 260 million acres (just in the US) was once the home to trees, plants and wild animals. Raising livestock is responsible for around 20% of all greenhouse gases!
Does this mean you have to become a vegetarian to do your part?
Just cut back. Eating meat at every meal or even everyday is not good for your health. Try a meatless Monday, or skip animal products before 6pm. Look to plants for protein like nuts, seeds, nut butters, green leafy veggies, green peas, beans, edamame & quinoa (to name a few).
Buy organic when possible. Conventional farming releases toxic chemicals into our soil, water and air. These pesticides, herbicides and other hazardous substances mess with the earth’s wildlife, ecosystems and over all health. Organic farming supports biodiversity and soil fertility which supports the health of plants, our planet and the health of our gut.
Plus, when you buy organic you are voting with your dollar, supporting the production of more organic products and lowering the price by increasing demand.
How far does your food travel to get to your plate? A major study called “Food, Fuel, and Freeways” did some investigating on this topic. They showed how far products traveled to get to Chicago’s “terminal market”.
Apples: 1,555 miles
Peaches: 1,674 miles
Grapes: 2,143 miles
These fruits are covering some miles.
Try buying local when possible. Not only will you be supporting your local economy, but your food will definitely taste better and be more nutrient dense (due to freshness). Think about joining a local CSA (community supported agriculture) this summer or make trips to your local farmers market. Know where your food has come from.
Ditch Packaged Foods
Not only are packaged foods full of “extra” mystery ingredients, high in sugar, salt and refined oils, this plastic packaging does not degrade well and is finding its way into our oceans. Fresh fruits, veggies and nuts are already prepackaged with nutrition and portability. Eat real, whole, clean foods as much as possible.
Support Environmentally Minded Companies
Again, we vote with our dollar. Take some time to do a little research and get to know the companies you consistently buy from. Check out the NON-GMO project’s website for information on companies who are GMO free (genetically modified organism). Also, look for their trusted stamp when shopping.
Another great resource is the EWG, Environmental Working Group, a leader in the world of advocacy in toxic chemicals, agricultural, and corporate accountability. You can download their app and scan products when shopping!
Eat Clean, Eat for the Planet and Eat for your Health!
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“Sarah & Karen’s 30-day clean living challenge changed my life. They provided a whole new perspective on diet, nutrition and health. I personally have been a chronic yo-yo dieter and this program feels like a breakthrough for me.
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