You can take steps to save the environment by making small habit changes. Modifying the way you eat can make a big difference and it's super easy! Being a conscious consumer is a great way to live a little more sustainably. Here are some actions you can take to help the health of both the earth and you!

Buy Seasonal Produce

Maya Shydlowski-Besmer

Produce grown and picked in-season is more sustainable because famers don't need to put in extra work and energy to force the growth of produce that isn't naturally growing at a certain time of year. Out-of-season produce is energy-intensive, less sustainable, and far less delicious. Check out what fruits and veggies are in season, whether winter, spring, summer, or fall.

Buy Local Produce

Maya Shydlowski-Besmer

If you buy your produce from local farms, your food doesn't need to be transported over long distances to get to your table. Not only will your food be more sustainable, but it will also be fresher! There are known health benefits to eating locally grown foods, like how using local honey helps alleviate allergies because you are consuming local pollen, which will increase your tolerance when allergy season rolls around. Additionally, purchasing from local farmers helps small businesses and the local economy! This is an all-around great idea.

Eat Less Processed and Packaged Food

Processed and packaged foods use a lot of chemicals and create a lot of waste, which are both bad for the environment. Eating sustainably includes creating less pollution, so choosing natural and unpackaged foods make a big difference. Plus, many of these processed foods are mass-produced with added modified ingredients that are generally bad for your health. If you're going to buy packaged foods, a good rule of thumb is to look for snacks with the smallest ingredients list. These ingredients are more likely to be natural rather than chemical.

Choose Certified Organic  

Certified organic foods don't use pesticides, which negatively affect our environment and harm small-scale farms. Paying the extra dollar for organic foods will help you eat more sustainably and will keep those nasty chemicals out of your body. Organic foods are usually labeled, so make sure to look for a sign before paying.

Avoid Water-Intensive Foods

The world is facing a water disparity crisis, partially because  70% of the world's freshwater is used for agriculture, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. Avoiding foods that use immense amounts of water, like almonds, pistachios, coffee, olive oil, and vanilla. Instead, use sustainable alternatives like walnuts, hazelnuts, tea, coconut oil, and chocolate. 

Finish Your Plate

We get it, your eyes can be bigger than your stomach sometimes. In general, though, try to only serve yourself as much as you can eat and save leftovers.  If your leftovers go bad or you have peels/husks/grounds, compost them! There are plenty of online resources that can also help you figure out how to reduce food waste. Reducing food waste and focusing on food recovery is a vital part of eating sustainably.

Reduce Animal Product Consumption

Of course, if you're up for the challenge, reducing or eliminating your meat and other animal product consumption is key to eating sustainably. Animal products are energy-intensive, water-intensive, and often produced uncleanly and inhumanely. It's not as hard as it sounds to get protein and other key nutrients without eating animal products. 

We wish you luck on all your sustainability endeavors!