National Nutrition Month: What Is Sustainable Eating For The Environment?

National Nutrition month sustainable eating

National Nutrition Month is celebrated in March. It is an annual campaign that began in the early 1970s. The theme for 2023 is “Fuel For The Future.” In honor of this year’s theme, I will be sharing some sustainable eating tips that may promote a  better environment. 

I hope that by reading this blog, you will be inspired to engage in at least one act of sustainability.

Eating is an essential part of our daily routine, but it is also one of the activities we engage in that can potentially have a negative toll on the environment. 

Jamaican Fruits

Every aspect of the food system has an impact on the environment, from food production to transportation and disposal. We can, however, make our eating habits more sustainable and reduce our environmental footprint with some deliberate effort and attention.

WHAT IS SUSTAINABILITY?

Sustainability entails practicing mindful eating by selecting foods that are not only good for our bodies but also good for the environment.

The food we eat plays an important role in promoting sustainable practices that can critically affect our planet’s future. 

Eating sustainably also entails making choices that are environmentally friendly, socially responsible, and cost-effective.

Below are some simple ways to incorporate sustainable practices into your daily routine.

Sustainability eating farmers Market

Sustainable Eating

Practical tips on how to eat sustainably to help save the environment.

Choose Foods In Season

Choosing foods that are in season and locally produced is one of the most important things we can do to eat sustainably.

This means that food does not have to travel long distances to reach our plates, which reduces greenhouse gas emissions from transportation.

Seasonal foods are also fresher and tastier because they are harvested at their peak ripeness.

To get access to locally produced food, visit your local farmer’s market or join a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.

Eat Less Meat

Eating less meat is another way to eat more sustainably. This was a difficult pill for me to swallow, as it was for many of us who grew up eating meat our entire lives.

Meat production necessitates the use of numerous resources, including water, land, and feed.

Furthermore, livestock farming contributes significantly to greenhouse gas emissions, particularly methane.

We can significantly reduce our carbon footprint by reducing our meat consumption or switching to plant-based alternatives.

Consider Food Packages

 We must also consider food packaging when shopping or deciding what to eat.

Single-use plastics and packaging add to the growing waste problem, with many ending up in landfills and the oceans.

To reduce our environmental impact, we can choose products packaged in recyclable materials and bring our own reusable bags and takeaway food containers.

BBC article answers a number of questions about the environmental impact of processed foods.

While the article discusses the effects of unprocessed foods (whole fruits and vegetables)

minimally processed foods (pre-cooked rice, dried or frozen vegetables), and 

ultra-processed foods (cakes and chips) on Green House Gas (GHG) emissions, the bottom line is that minimally processed foods have a lower carbon footprint.

Processed and packaged foods use more energy and produce more waste than fresh foods.

Choose whole foods whenever possible and prepare meals from scratch with fresh ingredients.

Food production consumes a significant amount of water globally. 

Reduce your water footprint by eating foods that require less water to produce, such as legumes, grains, and vegetables, and eating less meat.

I have been using this tip for many years. Only turn on the shower when you’re ready to use it.

 Showering for more than 20 minutes is not necessary every time. 

Reducing the amount of time you spend in the shower not only saves water, but also money.

Only run the dishwasher when it is completely full with dishes. 

The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) provides us with this and many other water-saving tips. Click  HERE  to learn more. 

Approximately one-third of all food produced in the world is wasted through every step of the food life cycle, says The World Count.

According to the article, the economic impact of food waste, including fish and seafood waste, IS estimated to be $1 trillion per year.

To help reduce food waste, plan your meals and only buy what you need.

Make creative use of leftovers and freeze excess food for later use. 

Katie from The Homesteading RD provides several practical tips for becoming more self-sufficient and sustainable by growing your own and preserving food.

Buy Food In Bulk

Purchasing in bulk reduces packaging waste and often costs less than purchasing pre-packaged goods.

Bring your reusable containers to the store and fill them to capacity.


Support Sustainable Agriculture

Look for labels that indicate that the food you’re buying is produced in a sustainable manner, such as USDA organic or Fairtrade. 

These certifications certify that the food was grown in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.

 

Sustainable living Concludes

Eating sustainably is all about making conscious decisions about the food we eat and its environmental impact.

We can all help preserve the planet and make a difference by eating locally produced, in-season, and plant-based foods, reducing packaging waste, avoiding food waste, just to name a few.

We can contribute to a more sustainable food system and a healthier planet by making small changes to our eating habits and lifestyle.

I hope you find my blog beneficial. You may also find these blogs below informative and a joy to read.

Here are a few environmentally friendly products available on Amazon.

These bamboo toothbrushes are incredible. I’ve been using them for a few years and love how eco-friendly they are; trust me, your mouth will thank you.

These images have Amazon links attached to them. If you buy any of these, I will get a commission at no extra charge to you.

Share at least one of your sustainable practices in the comment section below .

46 thoughts on “National Nutrition Month: What Is Sustainable Eating For The Environment?”

  1. I love eating seasonal vegetables and fruits. Sustainable habits are budget-friendly and healthy. Thanks for sharing a thoughtful post, Kevin.

  2. These are some great suggestions! I think finding better ways to package food and growing at home when we can are my favorites. Is really like to see more of this.

  3. This is a hot topic as of late since there’s so much abuse…I definitely try to be aware of conserving water and not wasting food. Thanks for the other suggestions. Though they require more work and intention, they’re just as important to keep our planet livable.

  4. Great tips, they definitely made us think about how we can iprove. For us, we love to shop at the local markets, the produce always taste great even if it doesn’t look perfect. Nice topic!

  5. Limit processed foods and water waste! Those are two I definitely agree with 100% ! I am constantly getting after my family about water waste- just turning off the water while we brush our teeth could save so much! Avoiding processed foods is more sustainable AND much better for our overall health!

  6. What an awesome post on sustainable eating. I purchase a bulk of our organic produce from the farmers’ markets every week. The produce tastes better, is a little cheaper and I feel better supporting the local farmers!

  7. These are great tips…eating less meat was a struggle for my husband…one entirely meatless meal didn’t work so I just limit portion sizes…I just switched to a produce store that sells bulk and allows me to bring my own containers…it’s great

  8. Great ideas! Especially growing plants at home. I think it’s important to be connected to what we eat – this way you’ll automatically waste less and eat real not processed food.
    Love this post.

  9. We are currently planning out what we will be planting for spring and summer crops, but also winter ones since our parents never do, and we’re very excited to get back to this! Plant-based eating is something we need to get back to now we moved, as we have had far too much meat! Nice post Kevin, loved it xx

  10. I always try to eat seasonal but I am trying to being more sustainable. I have a few plans to start growing my own in the summer. Thank you for sharing.

  11. This is such a helpful and informative blog! I always try to buy seasonal produce not only for the taste, but also since it’s better for the planet. Thanks for sharing these details on how to live more sustainably!

  12. Thank you for shedding light on national nutrition month and sustainable eating and how it contributes to the environment. It really is important information that needs to be shared!

  13. Great tips! I would like for my household to be more sustainable and to be able to teach my kids how to do this as well. I have been focusing on buying in bulk, but I need to move on to your other ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  14. I never really thought about sustainability when it comes to eating. I really like the idea of eating in season and buying in bulk. Can you can add pins to your articles so I can pin to my Pinterest board in case I need to refer back to this very useful article? Thanks.

  15. From a fellow Dietitian- great info- our hospital is moving to being more sustainable and we are always looking for ideas to bring to our patients and our hospital focus.

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