Many of the biggest contributors to your carbon footprint come from technology and its trappings. Think of your car, air conditioning and the processed foods you eat. All of these sources carry an environmental cost. An easy way to reduce your impact is to embrace a simple green life.
Ditch the Processed Foods
Processed foods are environmental expensive. First, there is the cost of producing a food. If it is a meat product, the costs are higher. A study published in Neurotoxicology may give you another incentive.
Researchers conducted a small study of pregnant women of the Old Order Mennonite (OOM) community. The data showed that these women had significantly lower levels of BPA, a chemical that can affect hormones in the body. Many processed food and beverage products use BPA in the manufacturing process. The findings reflect the low rate of exposure in the OOM women to BPA.
Advocates of organic farming have many arguments to support the practice. Without synthetic fertilizers or pesticides, its environmental impact is less than conventional farming. Oftentimes, organic farmers follow best practices to limit their use.
A study by the University of Barcelona may provide another reason to choose organic. Researchers found that organic tomatoes contained higher level of the polyphenols, a class of natural antioxidants found in plants. These findings support a 2010 study published in PLoS ONE that found that organic strawberries provide a better quality fruit which is sweeter and has better flavor.
Reduce Windshield Time
Exposure to chemicals comes from other sources as well. Another interesting finding of the OOM women study that participants who had been in a vehicle two days prior to urine collection had a greater concentration of chemicals than women who did not. The data suggests that even being in a car or truck increases your exposure to potential harmful substances.
To reduce your exposure, you can follow the same lifestyle as the OOM community when possible and walk or bike whenever practical. Not only will you reduce your carbon footprint, but you will also improve your overall health and reduce your risk for chronic disease.
That factor alone can further reduce your environmental impact due to added health costs. Embracing simplicity, therefore, benefits both you and the environment.