Environmentally Sustainable Dieting – 5 Things You Need to Know

May 30, 2018 by

By Summer Banks on Apr 30, 2018

What is Environmental Sustainable Dieting?

Environmentally sustainable dieting also known as an eco-friendly diet is ensuring your diet is based on plant and animal products produced with farming techniques that protect the environment and public health as well as animal welfare. It’s a diet that’s not only good for you but good for the environment as well.

Are Eco-Friendly Diets Nutritionally Adequate?

Yes, eco-friendly diets are nutritionally adequate because they advocated going heavy on plant-based foods and easy on meat-based foods. This ensures you can still get all the vitamins and minerals you need as well as protein, fat, and good carbohydrates.Though the main focus of the diet is not weight loss, many people who make the switch do see weight loss as a result because of the healthier choices.

Research shows that the Spanish diet has a significantly lower carbon footprint calorie for calorie when compared to the diets of the United States and the United Kingdom. The major differences are attributed to the smaller amount of meat eaten in Spain. Beef production is known to emit far more greenhouse gases then growing of vegetables and other plant foods. The Mediterranean diet, however, is characterized by abundant plant foods and little red meat while also coming closer to the eating pattern recommended by the World Health Organization.

Benefits of Environmentally Sustainable Dieting

Environmental Preservation

Sustainable Farms Produce crops and raising animals without relying on toxic chemicals, fertilizers, genetically modified seeds, or any processes that degrade soil, water, or other natural resources. This way, they protect biodiversity and maintaining healthy ecosystems.

Protecting Public Health

Food production shouldn’t come at the expense of human health. Because sustainable farms avoid using hazardous chemicals, they can grow fruits and vegetables that are safer for everyone from the consumer to the worker to the surrounding community. Sustainable livestock farmers and ranchers raise animals without using dangerous practices such as antibiotics or arsenic-based growth promoters. This keeps humans safe when they eat the meat and protects the farmers from exposure to pathogens, pollutants, and other toxins.

Economically Sustaining Communities

Sustainable agriculture allows farming to remain economically valuable and ensures everyone working in food production earns a livable wage while working under safe and fair working conditions. Sustainable farms also help keep the local and regional economies bustling to create good jobs and build strong communities.

Protecting Animal Welfare

Sustainable ranchers and farmers treat animals with care and respect. They implement livestock practices that protect the animals health and well-being. By allowing livestock to live on pasture, the animals move freely, eat a natural diet, and engage in instinctive behaviors. This allows them to avoid the stress and illness associated with confinement.

Principles of an Environmentally Sustainable Diet

Aim to be Waste-Free

Reducing the amount of food waste (including packaging) saves effort, energy, and natural resources that are used to produce and dispose of it – including money.

Eating Better – and Less Meat and Dairy Products

Meat and dairy products are costly to produce – because of the food it takes to feed the animals, as well as the processing requirements for these foods. Those who follow an environmentally sustainable diet aren’t necessarily completely removing and meat and dairy products from their diet, but rather focusing on eating more fruits and vegetables, grains, and pulses. This way they are eating smaller amounts of animal products and the animal products they do eat are produced to high welfare and environmental standards. This helps reduce both your health risk and greenhouse gas emissions.

Buy Local, Seasonal, and Environmentally Friendly Food

People who follow an environmentally sustainable diet make every effort to buy their food from organic, local farms. This benefits wildlife and the countryside while also minimizing the energy used in food production, transport, and storage while also benefiting the local economy.

Opting for Only Fairtrade Certified Products

This ensures disadvantaged producers in other areas aren’t taken advantage of in trade deals. This isn’t just about food, but also other products such as clothing and home goods.

Including Fish Only from Sustainable Sources

If we want our future generations to be able to enjoy seafood and fish, we must opt only to eat fish that comes from sustainable sources which are certified by the Marine Stewardship Council.

Making Efforts to Grow and Produce Our Own Food

Though it’s not always possible for everyone to grow and produce their food, those who are aiming to environmentally sustainable diet do their best to get as much as possible fresh from their own Gardens. And what they can’t get fresh from the garden, they opted to purchase from a variety of local markets, small shops, and other moments top type retailers to support the local community while keeping choice and variety an option.

Getting the Balance Right

This involves cutting down on sugar, salt, and fat, while doing your best to avoid questionable ingredients, such as additives and genetically modified ingredients.

Additional Resources

Eating Better: What is a Sustainable Diet?

Everything You Need to Know About Sustainable Diets in 12 Charts

The Basics of Sustainable Agriculture

33 Ways to Eat Environmentally Friendly

About the Author:Summer Banks, Director of Content at Dietspotlight, has researched over 5000 weight-loss programs, pills, shakes and diet plans. Previously, she managed 15 supplement brands, worked with doctors specializing in weight loss and completed co

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