Wondering how to eat sustainably in your daily life? It’s not as hard as it may seem. In fact, a few simple changes to your current grocery shopping and eating habits can make all the difference. Here, you’ll learn more about food choice and sustainability and tips for building sustainable eating habits.

What Is Sustainable Eating?

Sustainable eating has two key components: eating food that is good for your body and the environment. For your body, that means choosing food that’s full of key nutrients and inspires your wellness journey. And for our planet, this means selecting food that is grown, sourced and processed in a way that has a low impact on the environment.

For example, sustainable food includes fruits and veggies that are farmed locally without pesticides. Another example of sustainable food is products packaged without plastic.

Why Is Sustainable Eating So Important?

There are many reasons why sustainable eating is important for all of us that call our planet home. Sustainable eating:

  • Protects our planet’s resources: Sustainable eating helps to protect our planet’s resources to ensure future generations have the same access to nutritious food as we do now.
  • Protects our bodies: Sustainable eating habits help you to avoid food that may contain high levels of sugar and fat. Sustainable fruits, veggies and meat have the nutrients your body needs to thrive.
  • Protects us all from climate change: Greenhouse gases can cause the greenhouse effect which many believe is contributing to global warming and other changes in our climate. How can we reduce greenhouse gas emissions? You guessed it—by eating sustainably. For example, livestock accounts for 14.5% of the world’s greenhouse gases each year. Simply reducing how much meat you eat or choosing grass-fed meat when you shop can make a real difference.

How to Eat Sustainably in Your Day-to-Day Life

Sustainable eating is obviously beneficial, but how do you make it happen? You may think eating sustainably will take a lot of work. However, making a few simple changes is all it takes to start. Here are eight ways you can start prioritizing sustainability in your day-to-day.

1. Plant-Based Eating

As we mentioned earlier, livestock (aka meat) accounts for 14.5% of the world’s greenhouse gases. One way to limit your meat consumption is by adding more veggies to your diet. Of course, not all veggies are created equal. If you want to add more to your diet, try eco-friendly broccoli, peas, and potatoes.

2. Steer Clear of Out-of-Season Produce

Have you ever craved strawberries in the middle of winter? You can most certainly grab a carton at any time of year. However, strawberries and other produce are better when they’re in season. Not only do they taste better, but they may be better for the environment.

Eating only seasonal produce may help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Why? Local, seasonal produce doesn’t have to travel far for you to enjoy it. And when transport accounts for one-fifth of global carbon dioxide emissions, every mile counts.

3. Enjoy Your Leftovers

If you’re too full to finish your dinner, go ahead and pop it into the fridge for tomorrow’s lunch instead of throwing it away. Food waste ends up in landfills across the US and produces a large amount of methane. Unfortunately, methane is a powerful greenhouse gas. Simply eating your leftovers can help you avoid this waste.

4. Plan a Weekly Menu

Planning a weekly menu in advance can save you a ton of time when preparing meals. Plus, it helps you be more conscious about what you plan to fill your family’s bellies with that week.

Planning your menu also enables you to visit the grocery store once, instead of every other day. This helps you do your part in reducing vehicle pollution.

Grab a piece of paper and write down the days of the week. Then, spend some time coming up with recipes for each day. Don’t forget your leftovers and those veggies!

5. Visit Your Local Farmer’s Market

Everyone enjoys a stroll through Saturday morning’s farmer’s market. While you’re there, take advantage of the seasonal fruits and vegetables available. This produce is often locally grown without pesticides which are also a cause of greenhouse gas emissions.

7. Take Your Own Cup to the Coffee Shop

Plastic is damaging to our environment for many reasons. It takes hundreds of years to decompose and fills landfills across the world.

While eliminating plastic from your home may be an impossible task to complete all at once, there are plenty of small steps you can take. For example, take your own reusable cup to the coffee shop each morning. Or, avoid placing your produce in plastic bags at the grocery store.

8. Try Gardening

Do you have a green thumb? Growing your own garden can help you gain easier access to fresh produce right from the source. And while it sounds complicated, growing a garden can be as simple as planting some seeds in your backyard. You can check out this guide or this guide for basic steps for creating a garden of your own.

Jumpstart Your Sustainable Eating Habits With Pacific Foods

Adding sustainable food practices to your daily life doesn’t have to be hard. Start simple by selecting more sustainable ingredients from the grocery aisles such as Pacific Foods soups, broths and beverages. Feel good about what you eat by shopping our products today!