Thursday, April 19, 2012

Eat for the Earth

April 22 is a day to remember - it's my birthday!  It's also Earth Day - a day to think about how our actions impact our planet and our future.

I really like the theme that Earth Day Canada is focused on this year because it ties into nutrition and building healthy habits - both of which I focus on in my practice.  Their campaign is Take It Up For Earth Day - with the idea of taking up a new habits that's good for you AND the planet.

I would like to share some information from the Earth Day Canada factsheet:

  • The UN Food and Agriculture Organization reports that livestock production is responsible for 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions—more than the transport sector.
  • 23.1% of adult Canadians are obese and an additional 36.1% are overweight.
  • A study by Children’s Hospital Boston found that over a period of fifteen years young people who ate fast food twice a week or more gained 10 extra pounds and become twice as resistant to insulin than those who indulged less than once a week.
  • A meat-based diet requires seven times more land than a plant-based diet.
  • A study done in the Waterloo region found that food traveled an average of 4497 km to get there, emitting 51,790 tonnes of greenhouse gases in the process! If purchased locally those emissions would be reduced by 95%
Think about how your food choices impact the environment and perhaps you'll be inspired to create a new habit.  You don't have to do a major overhaul, but pick something small and work on it.  I'm not a vegetarian, I do enjoy the occasional steak, but my husband and I do enjoy vegetarian meals as well.  I also don't purchase all of my food from the farmer's market, but when I can and they have ingredients I need, then I will.  Even the simple, healthy act of focusing on increasing your plant-based foods such as vegetables, fruits, and legumes will help with your nutrition goals and have a positive effect on the planet.

Happy Earth Day (Sunday)!

Steph Langdon, RD
something nutrishus counselling & coaching