A diet rich in fiber helps, among other things, reduce cholesterol and the risk of heart disease.
7 tips to eat more ethically
In recent years there has been an increasing desire to become more ecologically friendly. As a result, many have decided to turn to a more ethically responsible diet. This new approach to food helps reduce our day-to-day carbon footprint.
In this article you will find 7 tips to help you eat more responsibly.
Buy less but buy better
This is the number one rule for a more responsible diet. Buy only what you need and not what you feel like you will want.
Make a list before going for your weekly shop. This should prevent you from buying food that you simply do not need. Buying too much may lead to you throwing stuff away.
If you think about it, buying only what you need is a win-win situation. You will probably find that you spend less and on you will almost certainly reduce your food waste.
Shop near you
The car journey between your home and your supermarket represents a significant part of the carbon footprint of your purchases.
The closer you buy to home, the more you can reduce the environmental impact of your purchases.
Shop local (from good producers and trusted labels)
In a more environmentally friendly approach, it is important to buy products from good producers, labelled or certified from nearby.
In order to act more responsibly, it is necessary to learn more about the production methods of the goods you’re buying.
One of the ways of doing this is by analyzing the information on the packaging – e.g. where it’s made, and whether animals or treated ethically.
Beware of waste
There are several ways to limit your food waste. As we have seen above, buying less but better produce is a positive first step.
Buying in bulk (such as in zero waste shops) reduces packaging, but also avoids waste by allowing you to buy the exact quantity you need. This method of purchase is not only eco-friendly but also a great way for you to save money.
If you’d like to be even more environmentally friendly, why not try buying foods with a fast approaching use by date? Supermarkets are required to throw away stock that’s not sold before its sell by date, meaning that hundreds of thousands of products are wasted every day. Often these products have actually been reduced in price, meaning that you will be doing your part to save the planet and you will be saving yourself some money!
Promote organic and GM-free production
Choosing to buy organic and GM-free food is always a good idea. When buying these sorts of products you can be certain that they do not contain pesticides or other chemicals that may be harmful to your health.
It is important to be vigilant though. Organic labelling is not the same on all products. You should always read what’s on the packaging carefully before purchasing.
Foods from organic farming or certified GM-free and are generally healthier.
Furthermore, according to the EFSA, organic products often have a higher nutritional content. Organic fruits and vegetables are said to be richer in polyphenols, which are known for their antioxidant properties. The chemical protection provided by pesticides encourages the plant not to produce its own natural defences, which are beneficial to our health.
Organic meat products tend to be less fatty due to the fact that the animals generally live for longer in more natural environments. They also tend to be richer in polyunsaturated fatty acids due to the better quality of their diets.
Finally, organic producers often look to reduce their own environmental impact. They often pick fruit and vegetables at the last minute so as to ensure that they remain fresh.
Buy seasonal products
Buying seasonal products guarantees quality and freshness.
Fruits and vegetables are harvested when ripe, which means that their flavor will be much more pronounced and tasty.
Why not try tomatoes in the summer and winter to compare their taste? You will quickly realize that they’re not the same!
This difference in flavor can be explained by the origin of some of the traditionally summer vegetables that we eat all year round. In winter, these vegetables are often imported from warmer climes or they are picked well before maturity in order to withstand transportation.
Consuming seasonal products often reduces the number of pesticides or other treatments used to preserve food for longer.
Be aware of your meat consumption
Everyone is free to eat as they wish. We are not by any means saying that you should remove meat from your diet. However, should you wish to have a more environmentally friendly approach you may choose to pay special attention to the amount of meat you’re eating and where it comes from.
The resources (water and food) required for meat production are much higher than those required to produce plant-based foods (cereals, vegetables, fruits, etc…). In addition, the food and water needed for the growth of these animals could be used directly for human consumption.
There are several ways to eat more responsibly. If everyone gradually starts to follow these tips, there may very well be a positive trend regarding pollution, food waste and the environment in the not too distant future.
It’s all up to you!