It’s officially Earth Day, but isn’t every day earth day? Like most moms out there, Mother Earth gives us a pretty convincing guilt trip: Take care of Her, or live with global warming forever. These Eco Tricks protect Her health – and Yours.
Go for Warm (Not Steamy) Showers
Earth benefit: It takes mega amounts of energy to produce extra-hot water…which just goes down the drain, then has to be treated (more energy!) before it can be used again.
Your Health benefit: A cooler cleanse protects your skin’s natural defenses against dryness and irritants; scalding H2O can exacerbate both.
Stick with Plain Soap and Elbow Grease
Earth benefit: Antibacterial lathers introduce hormone-disrupting nasties like triclosan into the water supply, where they can poison marine life.
Your Health benefit: Antibacterial products destroy all bacteria – both good and bad, leaving you more open to illness. It’s important to preserve as many good bacteria as possible to reinforce your immune system. We love these new Mother Dirt products, which preserve the healthy bugs on your skin.
Rethink Dry Cleaning
Earth benefit: “Dry Cleaning” is actually a misnomer – clothes are dunked in solvents that later trickle down sewage pipes into the ground, where they can contaminate wildlife water supplies.
Your Health benefit: “Wet cleaning” is similarly priced, so look for places that offer “eco” or “green” services. They safely launder dry-clean-only items with water and biodegradable detergents that don’t leave behind headache-causing chemical scents.
Request E-mail Receipts
Earth benefit: Receipts from a cash register are coated with BPA, a toxin that can make its way into the air, water, and soil, where it may harm all living creatures.
Your Health benefit: BPA can also mess with fertility, by effecting the quality of your eggs.
Get Into Meatless Mondays
Earth benefit: Cows produce a lotta, ahem, exhaust, and most of it is methane, a gas linked to climate change.
Your Health benefit: Eating high-fiber veggies, like mushrooms, instead of red meat at least once a week can help lower your cholesterol and control your blood sugar. You’re welcome, heart.
Stock Your Freezer
Earth benefit: Frozen fruits and veggies last longer (less food waste!) and often have a lower carbon footprint than those never frozen, since cold-packed eats can take a slow boat from far-flung countries to your grocery store, instead of a gas-guzzling airplane.
Your Health benefit: Some iced produce host even more nutrients than fresh-from-the-ground kinds. Two big winners: blueberries and peas.
Here are some of our favorite Eco-Friendly Reusables:
Happy Earth Day!
Kelly Harrington, MS, RDN
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist for Live Superfoods