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How to keep your eating habits sustainable in today's fast-paced world

Eating sustainably means making choices that are better for the planet, your health, and the well-being of others. Are you looking for ways to make your eating habits more sustainable? If so, you've come to the right place. In this blog, we will not only explore how to create a more sustainable eating routine, but we'll also introduce you to a brand that can help support your journey in today’s fast-paced world. Here are a few tips to get you started: 1. Focus on whole foods and minimally processed foods 2. Try to reduce your meat intake 3. Choose seasonal and locally-sourced foods 4. Avoid single-use plastics 5. Plan ahead

Written by
Yanti Rangkuti

1. Why focus on whole foods and minimally processed foods?

The term "whole food" refers to foods that haven't been processed. Fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains (such as oats, brown rice, and barley), nuts, beans, fish, shellfish, and eggs are all examples of whole foods. Foods that have been minimally processed include frozen and canned produce or whole wheat flour.
During the processing of food, fat, sugar, and salt are usually added, while important nutrients, such as fibre, are typically removed. A diet high in saturated fats, sugars, or sodium can increase the risk of developing chronic diseases. So, whenever possible, it is advisable to consume only whole or minimally processed foods. Why? Not only is it better for your health to focus on whole foods and minimally processed foods, it’s also more sustainable. Here’s how.
In contrast to processed foods, whole foods do not require large manufacturing facilities or complex food manufacturing processes. In other words, you are not contributing to the entire cycle of  factory emissions, toxic pollutants, or increased carbon footprints associated with the transport of manufactured goods on a large scale.

Check the ingredients!

But how do you know if foods are minimally processed? Simple, read the ingredients list and facts table. The more processed, the more ingredients. Try to avoid products that contain a lot of ingredients you don't recognize. So a box of frozen spinach should ideally only state ‘Spinach’ in the ingredient list. Same goes for canned fruits and veggies. Sodium is typically added as a preservative to canned vegetables and beans. It is advised to select canned vegetables and beans that do not exceed 5% of the Daily Value for sodium. Or, look for products with the label "no sodium" or "low sodium". Last but not least, make sure that you rinse canned vegetables and beans before eating them to remove excess salt.

2. Relation on meat consumption and environmental impact

If you reduce your meat consumption, you can reduce your environmental impact. In general, meat and dairy products have a greater carbon footprint. There is a clear hierarchy in the carbon footprints of different types of foods. Foods derived from meat and dairy tend to emit more greenhouse gases than those that are derived from plants. Furthermore, there is a consistent pattern observed within meat and dairy products: larger animals tend to be less efficient and have a larger carbon footprint. Most emissions are generated by beef, followed by lamb, pork, chicken, then eggs and fish.
You must, however, be aware of the nutrients you might be missing when cutting down on meat consumption. Among these, we would like to draw attention to Vitamin B12, which is almost exclusively found in animal-source foods, such as meat, fish, dairy products, and eggs. This nutrient is essential for the development of red blood cells, the maintenance of nerve function, and the functioning of the brain.
Individuals who consume a plant-predominant diet, including those who consume dairy products and eggs, are at risk for vitamin B12 deficiencies.
Consequently, if you are reducing your consumption of meat, it is imperative that you monitor your vitamin B12 levels and take supplements when necessary.

3. Choose seasonal and locally sourced-foods

Choosing seasonal and locally sourced foods is a great way to support your health, the environment, and the local economy. Food that is grown and produced nearby requires less transportation, which reduces the carbon footprint of your diet. But there are more reasons to choose seasonal and locally sourced foods! The first reason is they're usually picked at their peak of ripeness, so they're fresher and have more nutrients than foods harvested early and transported far. As a second benefit, you help the local economy and keep small businesses and family farms running by buying from local farmers and producers. Additionally, eating seasonally allows you to access a wider variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the year, which contributes to a more diverse diet by increasing your intake of nutrients. Lastly, seasonal foods are typically more affordable than out-of-season produce which must be imported from another country or region.

4. Try to avoid-single use plastic

It is essential to avoid single-use plastics in order to protect the environment, marine life, and human health. The problem with single-use plastics is they are non-biodegradable, so they don't decompose naturally, and it takes hundreds of years for them to break down. Eventually, plastic waste builds up in our environment, polluting our oceans, landfills, even our drinking water.

5. It’s all about planning

Developing meal plans in advance is an effective way to eat more sustainably and is beneficial to both our health and the environment. Meal planning reduces the chance of food waste because only the necessary ingredients are bought. As a result, eating habits become more sustainable. In addition, pre-planning meals allows you to ensure a balanced diet that contains nutrient-dense foods, thereby reducing the need for processed and packaged foods. Planning meals in advance can also save time and money by reducing the number of trips to the grocery store and avoiding last-minute takeout or fast food options, which can be more expensive and less environmentally friendly.
Having learned how to eat more sustainably, let's now examine what we can do to relax a bit more in today's fast-paced world.  Nowadays, stress is an inevitable part of life, and keeping up with a sustainable diet might bring some stress on top of managing the day-to-day responsibilities. With deadlines to meet, emails to respond to, and a never-ending to-do list, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and burned out. But, what if there was a solution to help you relax and promote well-being?
You may be familiar with the popular brand Gaia Herbs. Gaia Herbs makes herbal supplements and health products. A popular product of theirs is Gaia Herbs gummies, which are organic and made with real fruit flavours. We love Gaia Herbs gummies and  they would fit in a sustainable diet. Why? Let's take a closer look at thes gummies. 

“Sustainability is at the core of what we do, from the way we plant, grow, water, harvest, and distribute our herbs.” - Gaia Herbs 

Firstly, they are made with high-quality, organic ingredients, including real fruit flavors, organic cane sugar, and organic tapioca syrup. They do not contain any artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. Additionally, they are gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free, making them suitable for a wide range of dietary needs.
Next, let's talk about why Gaia Herbs gummies work with a sustainable diet. A sustainable diet is one that promotes health and well-being while minimising the negative impact on the environment. Gaia Herbs gummies align with this definition in several ways.
Gummies by Gaia Herbs contain organic, non-GMO, and sustainably sourced ingredients. Their Certified Organic farm allows them to grow 20-40 herbs each year without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or genetically modified seeds.This means that the production of these ingredients has a lower impact on the environment, as their organic farming practices do not use synthetic pesticides and fertilizers that can harm the soil and surrounding ecosystem.
Second, Gaia Herbs gummies come in eco-friendly packaging. The packaging is made from recycled materials and is fully recyclable, which reduces the amount of waste that ends up in landfills.
Third, by choosing Gaia Herbs gummies, you are supporting a company that values sustainability and environmental stewardship. Gaia Herbs has implemented a variety of sustainable practices in their operations, including the use of renewable energy, waste reduction, and water conservation, and are a certified B-Corporation.
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Gaia Herbs gummies are a delicious and nutritious option for those looking to incorporate a sustainable diet into their lifestyle. By choosing organic, sustainably sourced ingredients and eco-friendly packaging, Gaia Herbs is taking steps to minimise their impact on the environment while providing a high-quality product. Are you looking for something to help you sleep, gain strength, or relax in addition to your sustainable diet?  Be sure to click the button below to view our range of herbal gummies.
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