Daily Deal Family Health

6 Easy Ways to Make Eco-Friendly & Healthy Food Choices

March 13, 2018
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This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #OceanSprayOrganic #CollectiveBias

Making small eco conscious changes in every day life can lead to a large positive impact over time. Recycling, utilizing reusable shopping bags, and cutting down on home energy consumption are all common ways of lessening your carbon footprint, but what about the foods you purchase? Food also has a significant influence on the environment due to the way that it is created, stored, and transported. Listed below are six easy ways to make food choices that are both healthy for you and the environment.

1. Choose Organic

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Choosing certified organic foods means you are consuming foods produced with less pesticides and harsh chemicals while also being free of genetically engineered ingredients and hormones. In short, these foods help to preserve and maintain organic farmlands which aids in an all around healthy ecosystem. Organic foods are also naturally high in antioxidants and beneficial vitamins and minerals making them a healthy choice. Ready to make the switch to organic? Transitioning to an organic diet has never been easier with a huge variety of alternatives at affordable costs. Some of my favorite new organic products are from Ocean Spray®! Three delicious and flavorful USDA Organic certified and non-GMO juices are now available from the brand including: Ocean Spray® 100% Juice Organic Cranberry, Ocean Spray® 100% Juice Organic Cranberry Apple, and Ocean Spray® 100% Juice Organic Cranberry Blueberry! These juices are fresh from the farm, and from a good place making them a refreshing and great tasting addition to your family’s fridge. The juices are created with the crisp, clean taste of organically grown North American cranberries and are free of added sugar, preservatives, and artificial flavors so only goodness is in every sip. Ocean Spray® Organic 100% Juice is natural and healthy, so it is good for you and for your family. My family loves having these juices in the morning with breakfast to jumpstart our day or as a refreshing and sweet complement to an afternoon snack. My youngest two daughters especially enjoy these juices and I love that I can give them these juices knowing they are made with quality ingredients. We purchase the juices at our local Acme Market and even saved $2 with a special coupon! Head over here so you can try Ocean Spray® Organic 100% Juices and save $2 too!

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2. Avoid Fast Food

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Fast food doesn’t really fit into the equation when your living a mindful lifestyle and making healthy food choices. Although, sometimes it is inevitable that you need something to eat while on-the-go or an option that’s quick and convenient. For these times, you can easily make your own “fast food”. Meal prep all of your favorite foods whenever you have some down time so that you can use these prepared foods during your busy days throughout the week. Just be sure to store your foods in reusable glass or stainless steel containers to keep things eco-friendly and healthy for you. My family likes to prepare smoothie cups of frozen fruits or overnight oats for an easy portable breakfast, steamed/roasted veggies and quinoa for healthy lunches or as a side for a main dish, and no bake protein balls for a healthier alternative to cookies or sweets.

3. Start A Garden

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One of the best ways to eat healthy and eco-friendly is through you own organic garden. Plant all of your favorite fruits and veggies to have instant access to whole real foods that are nutrient dense, organic, and free! Be sure to find a place in your yard that receives at least six hours of unobstructed sunlight each day and use plants appropriate to your area’s temperature and season. To naturally deter bugs and critters from your garden, try adding a mix of garlic, oil, plant-based dish soap, and water to a bottle and lightly spray on your fruits/vegetables.

4. Look for Simple Ingredients

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An easy way to eat healthier for you and the environment is by choosing foods that are created with minimal and simple (easy to pronounce/recognize) ingredients. These foods are packed with nutrition and are free of added preservatives or artificial additives. Selecting foods with a short ingredient list means less overall processing and manufacturing which in turn is optimal for the environment. Since snack time is when you may be tempted the most to reach for unhealthy foods, try these ideas for a simple, satisfying, and protein rich snack: overnight oats/chia parfait, a spoonful of nut butter, nuts/seed mixes, hard boiled free range organic eggs, or crispy roasted chickpeas. For a sweet treat, a family favorite is apples sprinkled with cinnamon (put sliced apples in a reusable bag with 1 tsp cinnamon and shake until coated) or for a more savory snack we opt for avocado hummus or guacamole with sweet potato chips.

5. Eat Seasonally

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When shopping for produce, be sure to choose organic fruits and vegetables that are in season for your particular region. These foods will be fresher and more flavorful since they have been harvested shortly before being sent to your market. They will also be at their peak ripeness so they will be packed with beneficial nutrients. Another important reason to eat seasonally is that it drastically reduces environmental impact since the produce doesn’t have to be shipped cross country or travel long distances.

6. Shop Farm Fresh/Local Foods

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When shopping for produce or animal products (milk/eggs/cheese) check out your local farmer’s market first. Look for organic, antibiotic/hormone free options that are sourced from local farms. When you purchase farm fresh products from local markets you are directly supporting the organic movement from your community’s farms and small businesses.

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