We’ve advised you on how to dress and shop consciously, but have you ever wondered how you can eat more sustainably? Food accounts for over a quarter (26%) of global greenhouse gas emissions, while 70% of global freshwater withdrawals are used for agriculture. Clearly, how we eat lies at the heart of trying to tackle climate change, reducing water stress, pollution, and protecting the world’s wildlife. Ahead, we list five ways in which you can eat better for yourself and the planet.Key Takeaways:
Plant-based diets are not only the healthier alternative but can also help reduce the stress on freshwater resources and biodiversity loss
Raising and transporting livestock is a lot more resource-intensive than plant-based agriculture. Giving up meat is one of the best ways to reduce carbon emissions and overall environmental degradation
Eating local can help support farmer livelihoods and do away with plastic packaging and carbon emissions from transport
90% of world fish stocks are fully or over-exploited from fishing, but responsibly produced seafood can greatly benefit people, nature and the environment
Annually, we lose and waste 1.3 billion tonnes of food — that’s enough to feed 3 billion people. By shopping and consuming food mindfully we can help reduce this waste.
Veganism has extensive benefits; not only will it protect you against cardiovascular diseases by lowering your cholesterol but also help reverse the damage done to the environment by the dairy and livestock industry. The latter accounts for nearly 15% of all man-made greenhouse gas emissions whereas one-quarter of the global freshwater is used for the production and consumption of animal products. Adopting the plant-based way of eating will help reduce freshwater withdrawals and deforestation.2. Give up meat
Animal welfare organisation PETA reports that more than 29 million cows suffer and die in the meat and dairy industries every year, where they are treated and kept in the most inhumane conditions. Meat production is also a substantial contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. The environmental degradation further deepens, as raising and transporting livestock requires more food, water, land, and energy than plants. As an alternative, plant-based meats are quickly gaining popularity as a healthier and more sustainable option to regular meat.3. Eat local
Buying local produce helps support your local farmers in a meaningful way and also helps cut back on the necessity of more resources. Large retailers often sell frozen produce in single-use plastic packaging that is harmful to our world. Locally produced foods are comparatively fresher since they don’t need to be shipped anywhere — this ends up creating less waste and carbon footprint.4. Better seafood
90% of the world’s fish stocks are over-exploited from fishing. However, responsibly produced seafood can benefit people, nature, and our environment. You can make responsible seafood choices by trying out a diverse range of species from well-managed sources, eat lower in the food chain and opt for lower carbon emission seafood. Asking where your seafood comes from and how it was caught or farmed can also make a big difference to the sustainability of the seafood you buy.5. Cut the waste
Every year, approximately 1.3 billion tonnes of food go to waste. This food waste amounts to a major squandering of resources including, water, land, energy, labour, capital, creating needless carbon emissions contributing to climate change. By being mindful of what you buy, how you consume and dispose of food, you can help mitigate these losses.
Published by: Vibhuti Vazirani/ 2021-03-24