Inside: Going green for your health is one of the best (and easiest) things you can do to improve your life.  There are so many simple ways to to go green for a healthier lifestyle.  Here are just a few easy ways to be green and healthy. *There are affiliate links for Tru Earth in this post.  Click and I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  They are a product I highly value.

Going green for your health is one of the best (and easiest) things you can do to improve your life. You don’t need a lot of time, money, effort or special talent to develop an eco-friendly lifestyle.  Create a desire to better yourself and the world around you. No matter how new you are to the concept of going green, there are limitless, simple ways to get started. Here are few beginner tips on how to kickstart your eco-friendly lifestyle.

You have to hold yourself accountable for your actions, and that’s how we’re going to protect the Earth. – Julia Butterfly Hill Click To Tweet

Stop Spinning Your Wheels

In other words, drive less. Get out from behind the wheel and make an effort to walk or hop on a bike any chance you get. If your destination is under 30 minutes by foot…walk or bike it. Not only will you save a ton of money on gas, but it keeps you active.  As a bonus you’ll get some much needed time in the great outdoors. If you live too far away to make that jaunt on foot, try car-pooling or take public transportation once in a while. Fewer cars on the road means fewer toxic emissions, more exercise and cleaner air for all of us. That’s a win-win.

If you can afford it, try switching to a hybrid or electric vehicle.  There are still some bugs to work out.  But I am noticing that my smaller city here in Ontario is installing electric vehicle charging stations.  As the technology and infrastructure improves, more of us will get access to this technology.  Even though it takes carbon emitting companies to produce these vehicles, their use still reduces the number of individual sources of carbon emitters.

go green by riding a bike to work

Go green by riding a bike to work.
Image by RD LH from Pixabay

Going Green for Your Health by Choosing Local Produce

Begin stocking your fridge with fresh fruits and veggies from local farmers. This not only supports the farmer but ensures that you are getting fresher produce without all the toxins and pesticides mixed in,  Thus, you are choosing much healthier food for you and your family. Green foods lower glucose levels. They are very low in simple sugars. Also,their fiber and water help to regulate your blood sugar levels throughout the day.

Celery benefits your nerves and blood. Tomatoes, one of my favorite fruits, contain lycopene which is great for heart health and the fibre they contain, like other vegetables, is important for proper digestion.

Make an effort to visit a farmer’s market in your town whenever you have a chance or start a small garden in your backyard. I live in a small village.  We have a weekly farmer’s market.  My nearest city also has a weekly market.  Fresh, local produce is well within reach.

You can also start small and grow some fresh herbs in your windowsill. This practice creates easy access to healthy, fresh and inexpensive food without having to leave the house. Many of the plants you grow in your garden provide a food source for local pollinators which is a bonus for bee populations and boosts your local biodiversity.  Try growing heirloom varieties of plants and vegetables to maximize your impact on the environment.  Gardening is also known to be a great stress reducer and a fun way to have some bonding time with your family. You’ll also get the benefit of fresh air and much needed outside time.

go green by creating a balcony vertical garden

Go green by creating a vertical balcony garden.
Image by Maike und Björn Bröskamp from Pixabay

Eat Less Meat to Go Green for your Health

Going green for your health does not mean becoming a full-on vegetarian (although there is nothing wrong with that option) – simply be aware of how much meat you consume and make an effort to cut back. Red meat, especially is hard on the environment and in large quantities is not good for overall health.  We are making a real effort in our home to reduce our red meat consumption. So we eat more chicken and fish.

There are pros and cons to eating red meat.  It is a great source of protein and some vitamins like B12.  However, there are several negative downfalls to having too much meat in your diet. For one, consuming too much red meat has been linked to obesity, digestive issues and chronic diseases such as cancer. Also, the livestock industry is known to be one of the biggest contributors to global warming due to greenhouse gas emissions released during production.

You don’t have to eliminate red meat completely from your diet.  But, cutting meat out of your diet even one night per week can have a huge impact on your overall health and the amount of pollution caused by this process.

A healthy, green diet includes more vegetables.

A healthy, green diet includes more vegetables.
Image by Aline Ponce from Pixabay

Start Recycling to Go Green

If you haven’t already done so, recycling is a simple way you can make a big impact right from the start. Recycling encourages you to think with an eco-friendly mindset, paying more attention to the things you throw away and how they can impact the environment. Reducing waste in your home means there will be less of it piling up in the landfills to pollute the surrounding air, soil and water. Recycling is an easy way for you to do your part in creating a healthier environment with a little education and minimal effort.

Up your green factor by recycling.

Up your green factor by recycling.
Image by Shirley Hirst from Pixabay

Support Companies that Use Recycled Material

There is a caveat to recycling however.  Not all of our recycling ends up where we think it does.  Many areas use a market based system for dealing with recyclables.  Recycling rules differ depending on your location.  Where I live in Ontario, recycling is still a market-based.  That means that although my municipality collects my recycling, it is then sold to other companies that may or not repurpose it.  I know of at least one local company, Taylors Recycled Plastic Products Inc, located in Bailieboro, Ontario, that uses recycled plastic for their products.  According to Brooke Taylor from the company,

Yes most of our plastic in our plastic lumber and furniture is from local sources  (Ontario is what we call local) The recycled plastic comes from several sources one being the blue box program .We have no PVC in our plastic products, and the premium lumber has no PETE (that’s the pop bottles ).  Utility grade lumber is what we call co-mingled using all different types of recycled plastic mixed together ,but again no PVC.  We are running through our business approximately  750,000lbs a plastic per year that once went to landfill .  We create more electricity with our solar panels then we use at our business and at my personal residence as well.

We Need to do Better in our Consumption Patterns

The reality is that a lot of our recycled material in Canada ends up in landfills or burned.  Much of our recycled materials was bought by oversees buyers who refuse now to buy contaminated recycling.  So…for market based systems, that recycling likely ends up in landfills or is burned.  British Columbia is one province that uses a producer-funded recycling program:

Anyone who creates, imports, or sells a product in B.C. is financially responsible for the recycling of that product. This “extended producer responsibility” (EPR) model is hugely successful. — Natasha Simpson

Ontario is considering changing over to this model.  But as with all shifts in philosophy, that will take time.  And all things good for the environment are worth investing the time and money in.  So again, supporting businesses like Taylors Recycled Plastic Products, that divert harmful plastics from landfill, is important.

Buy from Eco-Friendly Companies

You can also help out your need to recycle by buying items that have less packaging.  I’ve recently switched over to Tru Earth Laundry strips.  They are made in Canada (a bonus for me as a Canadian).  More importantly, they have minimal packaging.  These strips are housed in cardboard.  Simply tear off one strip and add it to your laundry.  I have a high efficiency washer and they work really well.  When the strips are gone simply recycle the packaging with your paper.  Click here to check them out!

These are just a few simple ways to get you started on your eco-friendly journey. As you can see, you don’t have to makeover your whole life to go green. Going green for your health is not hard. Start by tweaking a few of your daily habits and you’ll begin seeing a big impact on your health and the world around you.

going green for your health by planting a garden

 

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