Monthly Archives: August 2015

How Can We Eat Organic and Live a More Sustainable Life?

So, you want to eat organic but don’t know how? There are some tips you can live by to bring healthy food to you and your family. One thing to think about is the outside of the fruit or veggie. If it has a thicker peel, like a banana, the pesticides used won’t get into the fruit. Where strawberries or spinach is concerned there is no protective “shell” so the pesticides used have no barriers and will attach to the fruit or veggie.

What does organic mean? Well, for the most part organic farmers don’t use chemical pesticides, only certain types of sustainable and earth friendly bug control. There is more to it, but that is the basic difference between organic and conventional foods.

If you have a limited budget, like we do, going for organic fruits and veggies can be a hang up. Honestly, it would be better if we knew what we should buy organic and what doesn’t need to be. Certain veggies and fruits have characteristics that make them less likely to need pesticide use or what is used doesn’t stick to the plant.

For the fruit and veggies you do have to buy that are not organic you can wash off any pesticide residue with white vinegar. Just fill your sink with water and add at least one cup of vinegar, let soak for 15 minutes, rinse and continue with your meal prep. Don’t worry about the vinegar, it won’t change the flavor of your food but it will take care of the pesticides.

With the information the Environmental Working Group put out, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition put together a list of most pesticide laden foods and the cleanest non-organic foods. You can use this list to save money by buying only the organic foods you should buy and purchasing conventional produce for the cheaper price. Also, buying in bulk and planning your meals will go a long way in keeping food costs down.

Here is the list:

There are some things you can do to help yourself, your family and your community stays healthy, thrive and leave this planet in How to Live a More Sustainable Life better shape than we found it. Buying local products, shopping at your local farmer’s market, choosing sustainable farming foods and restaurants that use local ingredients are great ways to make a difference.

We can start at the bottom, with us consumers, who by our choices can drive the market and force the big conglomerates to change their ways and make our food and our planet better. It all starts with us and our choices. Here are 10 easy ways that you can live a more sustainable lifestyle and tips on how to begin.

1.   Buy local products when possible, otherwise, buy organic and fair-trade products. Ask your grocer or favorite restaurant what local food they carry and try to influence their purchasing decisions. You will support your local economy and small farmers, reduce your exposure to harmful pesticides, improve the taste and quality of your food, and protect the environment from fertilizer and pesticide run-offs.

2.   Shop at your local farmers market, join the Community Supported Agriculture and get weekly deliveries of the season’s harvest and by buy from local grocers and co-ops committed to stocking local foods.

3.   Support restaurants and food vendors that buy locally produced food. When at a restaurant, ask your waiter where the meat and fish comes from. Eventually, as more and more customers ask the same question, they’ll get the message!

4.   Avoid GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) LIKE THE PLAGUE! When buying processed food (anything packaged) buy organic to avoid GMO. Since almost all the soy, corn, and canola in the US is genetically modified, over 70% of all processed food contain GMOs from by-products of these grains.

5.   COOK, CAN, DRY & FREEZE! Our culture has forgotten some of the most basic joys of cooking. Not only is cooking at home better for you and more economical, but it’s an invaluable skill to pass on to your children.

6.   Drink plenty of water, but avoid bottled water when you can. Water bottles pollute the environment and bottled water is often mere tap water. Plastic is harmful to your health and to the environment. Buy a reusable water bottle and invest in a good water filter.

7.   Grow a garden, visit a farm, volunteer in your community garden, teach a child how to garden. GET DIRTY! Have fun!

8.   Volunteer and/or financially support an organization dedicated to promoting a sustainable food system. Stay informed by joining the mailing list of the advocacy groups you trust.

9.   Get involved in your community! Influence what your child eats by engaging the school board, effect city policies by learning about zoning and attending city council meetings, learn about the federal policies that affect your food choice and let your congress person know what you think.

10.   SHARE your passion! Talk to your friends and family about why our food choice matters.

Choosing to look into what food your family eats and purchasing the best you can is the key to health. Whatever you can do for yourself and your family is worth the extra effort.

Copy Protected by Chetan's WP-Copyprotect.