Humankind’s relationship with the earth has been quite a unilateral one. We keep on asking more and more from it, without paying much heed to care for it as well. Ignoring the threat our selfishness can pose, many of us still think of ourselves only.
Our planet has given us shelter, food, clothing, and so much more. Isn’t it worth fighting for? As more awareness is being spread, an environmentally friendly approach, also known as “going green,” is becoming a rising trend. So why not adopt it for the sake of ourselves, our future generations, and our earth? Even if you don’t believe in climate change and its effects, won’t you prefer living a healthier life?
Let us begin with a positive statistic to convince ourselves how effective it can be to go green. WHO says deaths due to infectious diseases, such as diarrhea, and malaria, have declined. The key contribution to this decline is access to safe water and sanitation, and lesser domestic use of fossil fuels. Moreover, there is better success in immunization, insecticide-treated mosquito nets, and essential medicines.
We all know how exercise, a balanced diet, or hygiene can keep us in good health. But, what are some of the things we can do to care for our health and the environment simultaneously? Read on to know:
1. WALK RATHER THAN DRIVE FOR SHORTER DISTANCES
when you need to go somewhere in the vicinity, there is no need to look for your car keys. Walk instead to burn more calories and reduce harmful emissions your car makes. Walking increases your heart and pulmonary health. It will help shed those extra pounds, melting away the visceral fat if you do it habitually.
Lessened use of transport means lessened carbon emissions, eventually contributing to a better climate. WHO claims that reducing traffic congestion and improving public transport networks are essential determinants of air pollution.
It says that if city planners and transport sector cooperates, the environmental disease burden can be significantly reduced.
You can even ride your bicycle for longer distances, as it also an excellent form of workout. Not only for weight and your heart, but you will also save yourself from noise pollution as well. Let us further discuss noise pollution.
2. CUT NOISE POLLUTION
Traffic noise, horns honking, vacuums and other home appliances running, loud music, or construction going on nearby, all of these adversely impact our health. Bad noise can be a significant cause of high-stress levels, hypertension, headaches, and even hearing loss.
At least one million thriving life years are lost every year from traffic-related noise in the western part of Europe.
Applying noise-proof sealant on your windows and doors and white noise usage can minimize the effects of loud sounds. Using earplugs in high noise areas such as your workplace or a social event can protect your ears.
3. PLANT THAT SEED, NOW!
There is a very motivational Chinese Proverb, which goes like, “The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second best time is now.”
Plants are not only the source of oxygen, shade, and food for us, they also reduce stress. When you plant a seed, you are also planting hope and prosperity for the future.
Another inspiration to plant is that if trees are adequately planted around a building, that building will need significantly less airconditioning. Plantation cools down the neighborhood by reducing temperatures, which is an issue requiring our immediate attention. Moreover, plants fight air pollution, lowering risks of asthma, and other breathing difficulties.
4. CONSUME ORGANIC ONLY
You can even plant your vegetables and fruits if you have space for a kitchen garden. Growing your own organic food is very easy and rewarding. Not only it provides great health benefits, but it is also very economical.
If growing them yourself is not a possibility, you can consider buying organic food from the local greengrocer. To protect you from many diseases, and to take care of the environment, healthy eating is the way to go.
Why? BecauseThe World Counts says that Organic agriculture can lessen the requirement for fossil fuel for crop production by 70 percent. If used worldwide, organic farming could stock CO2 by an amount corresponding to a global emission reduction of 40 percent.
Non-organically grown food has a high amount of pesticide sprayed on it, which causes multiple harmful effects such as cancer, premature aging, and heart diseases. Opting for organic food will save you from these, and provide you with a better taste and immunity.
5. BUY ECO-FRIENDLY, BIODEGRADABLE PRODUCTS
A lot has been said about the harmful effects of Bisphenol A (or BPA), a key component of plastic products, specifically disposable plastic. It poses adverse outcomes on the human body, such as obesity, hormone imbalance, infertility, and atypical neurological disorders in children. According to The World Count stats, The world produces almost 7 million tons of BPA every year – even though it is known to be hormone-disrupting.
As awareness spreads, single-use plastic is being replaced by biodegradable products. When we buy biodegradable disposables, not only we save ourselves from the adverse effects of BPA, but we also contribute towards efficient waste management. These products completely turn into compost and are used for plant growth.
6. USE NATURAL PRODUCTS
Be it the clothes you wear, the products you use for cleaning or apply on your body, go for natural as much as you can. Using pure is not only good for our overall health, but it is also beneficial for our planet.
Production of synthetic fabrics requires the use of high energy and crude oil, which puts our environment at higher risks of air and water pollution. Whereas natural materials such as cotton, silk, jute, and wool are not only breathable, they are gentle on skin, preventing the risk of allergies. Your skin would be grateful to you if you opt for natural fabrics as they have a high absorption ability.
You can also contribute to saving the planet by using natural cleaning products instead of harsh chemicals. Your grandma wasn’t wrong when she swore upon vinegar, baking soda, borax, and lemon to clean almost anything in the house. Eco-friendly options are equally tough on all kind of grease and stains, yet you are sure no chemical fumes are escaping in the atmosphere.
In addition to clothing and cleaning, you should also switch to natural skincare and beauty products. By using them, you won’t have to worry about any side effects.
Chemical-based products not only irritate your skin, but they also deteriorate the environment as well. Whereas, natural products like coconut oil, honey, shea butter, olive oil, baking soda, lemon, and milk are perfectly safe to use, even better than the chemical ones for beautifying you.
As Howard Zinn said, “Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.” You don’t have to think your efforts will go futile. Even a little will go a long way, and we will be able to protect our environment from further damage. You will also set an example and pass on the same values to your children who will carry on your legacy in the future.
Justin is a fashion enthusiast and has the soul of a traveler. Staying atop the fashion trends, styling and grooming are etched in every fiber of his being. Not only that, but he loves to share his thoughts with a myriad of people via his blogs. You can follow him on Twitter @justcody89