I have a diet for you!

Planet Earth Diet

A Seven Day Diet Challenge!

Get ready for Monday, the best day of the week to plan for sustainable food. Instead of trying this diet and that diet, how about considering the Planet Earth Diet when you choose your meals and purchase groceries. Monday is the best day to start! An international panel of scientists has just finished their study on what is needed for health and sustainable diets. We need to change our eating habits, reduce food waste and improve the way we produce food. “The food we eat and how we produce it determines the health of people and the planet, and we are currently getting this seriously wrong,” said Tim Lang, a food scientist at the City University of London, and one of the authors.

For some of their thoughts on how we can be healthier and more sustainable. the  researchers have prescribed a new diet for the planet: more vegetables, less meat, fresh fruit, whole grains, give up sugar, and waste less.

Below are some good ideas from the Seattle Times:

Reduce meat and dairy. Reduce doesn’t have to mean eliminate. Meat and dairy are excellent sources of protein and essential nutrients, so if you enjoy these foods and feel good when you eat them, continue to include them in your diet. But many people eat more red meat than is recommended for good health. If all — or most — typical eaters reduced their meat and dairy intake by swapping a few servings a week for plant-based protein foods with low-carbon footprints — like beans, lentils and soy foods — we could have a large collective impact. So if you’ve been meaning to observe “Meatless Monday” but never quite followed through, there’s no time like the present.

More fruits and vegetables

Eat more fruits and vegetables. Local is best, but not the easiest in the winter.

Reduce packaging. Broccoli has a small carbon footprint, but broccoli florets packaged in a bag or plastic container have a much larger footprint than a whole head of broccoli. It’s the packaging that makes a difference.

Reduce food waste. In this country, we waste about 40 percent of the food produced. Meal planning can help.

Give it a seven day challenge. Good luck!

Good tips on eating sugar-free here.

A Simple Message

Don’t waste food, don’t waste plastic and don’t waste energy!

A simple message from David Attenborough

New Beginnings

A new year brings new energy, new projects and hope into our lives. May we move on to a positive new beginning for us all.  One thing that 2018 told us is that our Earth is struggling with harmful human activity. Our warming climate and our dependence on single-use plastic can have tragic implications as we move into the future. We can’t predict the future, but plastic waste and climate change are not going away.

If everyone does a small amount it can make a big difference! I have two things you can do to make a big difference on the Earth this new year. Even if you change one thing you do, and focus on that one thing in 2019 you will be making a difference!

How are you reducing your plastic footprint?

When I started this blog years ago, I was trying to get people to recycle. While I hope you will still recycle what needs to be recycled, it has become harder and harder to recycle that pesky plastic. Glass, aluminum and paper have markets, but we just use so much single-use plastic and there aren’t enough markets for plastic. Plastic can’t be recycled over and over like glass and aluminum.

Shop in bulk

We need to reduce our plastic footprint. Start by changing one thing you purchase in plastic. At our house we refill bottles/containers with bulk at our local coop: soaps, lotions, teas, nuts, rice and almost every dry product we eat.  We make our own yogurt, humus and cashew milk. Even as hard as we work on this we can’t avoid all packaging, it is too ubiquitous. As human beings we haven’t figured out our complicated  relationship with plastic. The best thing is to avoid it.

Tackling food waste is another way we can all make a difference. If you purchase in bulk you can get just the amount you need.  Forty percent of our food in the USA goes to waste, I mourn the valuable water and energy wasted on uneaten food! How have you done on your holiday leftovers? Freeze, cook, eat that food! Be vigilant. I make it into game with myself to be creative making new items from left-overs to keep from wasting food. Just think of the water and energy that we could save! Also, rotting food waste in landfills creates methane contributing to warming the planet.

Some other ideas to make a difference: Make changes in your kitchen and 10 green resolutions from Earth911. PBS offers three science based ideas here.

Some inspiration from Dan Rather: ” I stand at the precipice of 2019, alongside all of you, and breath deep a spirit of empathy and a determination to do our part to help make this world a better place.”

Happy hopeful new year!

New November

As long as you live, keep learning how to live!” Seneca

Be curious, ask questions, listen, volunteer, read a new book, take a new class, meet a new person, try something new!

What new things would you like to learn? I love this month’s happiness calendar. It’s about learning something new. A friend of mine attends the University Of Minnesota every weekday to study French, just for fun. She’s curious and learning something new! There is so much to learn and enjoy about the Earth and about difference cultures and ideas. So much to learn about science and geography, about history and literature, and on and on.  I hope the below calendar makes you curious and helps you learn some new things. I hope it helps you set new goals, and that you have a “New Things November.”

Sundays: Super Sunday! A perfect day for kindness. How can you show people they are special to you, and that you are thinking of them?

Mondays: Make It Respectful Monday! Demand people show you respect, and show them respect back. Aim high, never gossip, lie, bully or make fun of people. Compliment, and active listen.

Tuesdays: Good Thoughts Tuesday!  Give yourself a boost of positive energy. Enjoy the day and have fun. Turn off politics, Facebook and Twitter.

Wednesdays: Zero Waste Wednesday! Bring your lunch, use only reusable dishes, glasses and utensils. Cook your dinner, no take-out, and no wasted food! If possible leave your car at home. Have fun being good to the Earth!

Thursdays: Thankful Thursday!  Think of all the people you are thankful for. How many times you can say, “Thank you.”

Fridays: Listen/Friendship Friday! Check in with an old friend or make a new friend. Listen and ask questions.

Saturdays: Smile Saturday! The more you smile the happier and better you feel. Good luck!

 

 

What Does a Climatarian Look Like?

Our everyday activities make a big difference and small positive changes by everyone, can make a big difference to the health of our Earth. A Climatarian thinks about their impact on the Earth everyday, and they work to reduce their daily impact.

The news just keeps getting worse and worse for our warming planet as some places are overwhelmed by drought and fires, and others are inundated with storms and water. Warmer air holds more water and has caused ocean levels to rise causing hurricanes to become more destructive. Wildlife and humans are on the loosing end of this destruction. The lives lost, and the struggle to survive and rebuild are staggering. We are facing a climate breakdown! Read about the latest climate report by the world’s scientists here.

Instead of trashing our air and water we need new paradigms to live by to protect our home.  Our current United States government is determined to make this climate breakdown worse. Our warming planet is not going to heal itself. With a little personal responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint we can have cleaner air and water, and a much healthier planet. Let’s make it a team effort and make it a win-win for us all! As self-described Climatarian below are the things I work on everyday to reduce my footprint on Earth. To be successful start small, and when one thing becomes a habit try to add another.

Take personal responsibility to heal our Earth. My vision of a Climatarian is below. What is yours?

Bulk shopping reduces food and packaging waste. Refill your own containers

** Work for zero waste by reusing, refilling and refusing. This takes practice and commitment, but it is fun and easy once you get the idea of how, you can become an almost zero waster! Also, don’t waste food: Freeze and label your leftovers, and put them in wraps, stir fry or something you cook next. Be creative!  Managing food waste takes constant vigilance. I will help you get started with zero waste, ask me how to begin????

** Reduce your meat consumption. We haven’t eaten beef or pork for many years, and I actually forget about purchasing from our local chicken source. Meat takes lots of water and energy to raise, and it is a terrible pollutant to our air and water.

** Drive less: No one wants to reduce their driving, but carpooling, public transportation and walking can be fun. Try it!!

This symbol means a lot more than to recycle. A circular economy manufactures and purchases goods from recycled materials.

** Consume less! The more we consume the more the planet suffers and the more garbage we generate. Buy less stuff and purchase things that last, and that you will reuse over and over. Try to become part of the circular economy.

And from EcoWatch, things you can do to avoid climate catastrophe. From the Washington Post things you can do for our Earth.