Sustainability is a bit of a buzz word right now, but it isn’t always clear what it means. I support eating a more sustainable diet – that is, a pattern of eating that has a low environmental impact. It’s no secret that our planet is suffering from air and water pollution, along with depleted nutrient levels in soil and overfished oceans. But what will it take to convince you that it matters to you?
Let’s start with air pollution. Increased allergies, upper respiratory tract infections, eye irritation and headaches. Heart disease and lung cancer (top causes of death in the U.S.). Extreme weather patterns that effect you if you like to play, hunt, fish, camp, or exercise outside.
A first step in confronting air pollution is something we can each easily address: less food waste. Here in the U.S., we waste 30-40% of our food. Some of that waste occurs along the production chain and in food service, but it’s estimated that household food waste is a striking 30%! When food is disposed in landfills, it rots and becomes a huge source of methane, a greenhouse gas with over 20 times the damaging effects of CO2. Food waste is a higher polluter than road transportation. Yikes. Find good tips on reducing food waste here.
Just One Thing to do: Only buy food you know you will eat. Buy less at the market and use up everything.
P.S. April is Earth Month, so follow along all month as I present more ways you can eat a more sustainable diet! Weekly updates will appear on this blog and on my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/JustOneThingNutritionMelissaWdowik/