This week is Active Commuter's Week! Everyone is encouraged to use an alternative mode of transportation to help reduce the number of cars on the road and to get people moving in their daily lives! This got me to thinking about the other ways doing good things for ourselves (being more active) equals an equally good thing for the world (reduced carbon emissions from cars).
Here are a couple examples of ways we can begin to create our healthier selves and in turn create a healthier world!
Buy and eat local food! When you shop at your local farmer's market or buy produce labeled "local" in the stores you are creating a more closed loop food system. The benefits are many including
- local food tends to be more nutritious. Fruits and Veggies start to lose their nutritional value as soon as they are harvested. If you are buying tomatoes from Michigan harvested yesterday versus tomatoes from California harvested 5 days ago the Michigan tomatoes win the nutritional contest. And you win all those extra vitamins and minerals!
- money spent locally stays local. Around 62% of every dollar spent at a locally owned store or producer stays local.
- local food doesn't travel as far using less "food miles". Food miles is the term used to describe how much fuel is used to get our fruits, veggies and meat to our stores and homes. The less food miles we use the less carbon emissions are released into the atmosphere.
Another way to help yourself and the world is to buy foods labeled "Organically Grown" or grown using "Organic Practices"
- there has been a lot of recent controversy surrounding the word "organic". Many people believe if something is labeled "certified organic" it is automatically better than the alternative. This is not always true. Many commercial organic companies still use organic "pesticides" which may harm the balance of nature. Talk to your farmers! Ask what their practices are. Many farms use organic practices without being certified (certification is very expensive).
- eating organic produce can be more nutritious. When pesticides are used they deplete the naturally occurring minerals in the soil. This deprives the plant from consuming those minerals and passing them on to you through the edible portion of the plant.
- buying organic can also help the environment, protecting nearby wildlife from unrecognizable sprays and fertilizers and preventing runoff of these poisons into our water sources.
- use your dollars spent on food to increase the demand for sustainable meat and produce. The supply of good food will increase with the food dollars spent on these items.
There are many ways to do good for you and in turn do good for the world. Consider these other ways to make an impact...
-take a cold shower. Shown to decrease the size of your pores and seal your hair follicles against damage, this method also saves a ton of household energy from being used.
- grow your own food. Planting a house hold garden will save you money. Plants ingest CO2 decreasing the amount of carbon released into our atmosphere. Plant soil has also been shown to contain mood enhancers.....get your hand dirty!
Feel free to comment with other ways you or your family are making an impact!!!