When it comes to making your life a little greener, you might be helping more than just mama earth. Here are some ways to keep the earth clean while improving your health and saving money? Yes!
- BYOB – No, not your own beer, bottle! You can fill up on beverages wherever you go, whether you’re at the gym, juice press, airport or coffee shop. (Tip: Politely ask your barista if they would fill your order in the bottle you brought; chances are they will gladly do it if you tell them you’re trying to help the environment by avoiding unnecessary waste!) Having a water bottle on you at all times also makes it more likely that you will stay hydrated and stay away from sugary carbonated beverages, not to mention how much money you’ll save by ditching plastic bottles.
“Making bottles to meet America’s demand for bottled water uses more than 17 million barrels of oil annually, enough to fuel 1.3 million cars for a year. And that’s not even including the oil used for transportation.”
“Americans used about 50 billion plastic water bottles last year. However, the U.S.’s recycling rate for plastic is only 23 percent, which means 38 billion water bottles – more than $1 billion worth of plastic – are wasted each year.”
2. Do your food shopping at a Farmer’s Market – Support your local economy and farmers by buying your fruits, veggies and more at your local farmer’s market. Not only are you helping the earth by supporting better farming practices, you are also eating tastier and more nutrient dense foods which are in season and that boost your immune system. It doesn’t hurt that you can shop outside and meet people in your community who are also interested in making a difference in the planet and their health.
“Three out of four farmers who sell at farmers markets use practices that meet or exceed organic standards.”
3. Do you have to drive? If not, then why not pull that bike out of the garage that’s been sitting there for months or grab some comfy shoes and walk to your destination? This one doesn’t need much explaining. Less fossil fuels, more feeling fueled. Instead of a carbon footprint, go leave an actual footprint… outside.. let’s go!
4. Reusable Bags – I keep reusable bags with me all the time, stuffed at the bottom of my purse incase I need it, in the trunk of my car for groceries. It’s always good to be prepared to avoid plastic bags. If you are buying bulk food items such as beans, oats, rice, etc. you can bring cloth bags to fill with food, this way you avoid buying the items already packaged in plastic.
“Nearly 2 million plastic bags are used and disposed of every minute.” – Earth Policy Institute
5. Line Dry your Laundry! – It will save energy and extend the life of your clothing, ultimately saving you $$$. You and mama earth are both gonna be lookin’ good when you skip the drying machine.
6. Coffee drinkers I’ve got a question for you… What do you do with your leftover coffee grounds? Oh, you already dry them and save them to exfoliate your skin and make your hair shine? Okay cool. Well incase you don’t, coffee grounds are full of antioxidants and naturally scrub away dead skin cells leaving you with radiant skin. So next time you’re looking for an exfoliating product at Sephora for $68, just remember to drink some coffee and save your money.
7. Share/Borrow/Buy Used – Before clicking the epitome of convenience that is Amazon, think about where you may find what you’re looking for at zero cost. Need a screw-driver? Lawn mower? French press? Ask your neighbor or a friend if they might have what you’re looking for. Check Craigslist, Facebook, thrift stores and if after that you can’t seem to find what you’re looking for and know that you’re better off buying it new, then go for it.
8. Get Creative With Your Wardrobe – Thrift Shop, swap clothes with friends, find pieces no one else has, except maybe your grandma.
“Americans send 10.5 million tons of clothing to landfills every year.”
There are plenty of other ways to live greener that boosts your health and personal finances. What are some of your favorites?