Happy World Environment Day Humans! I thought it was only fitting to post the second instalment of this two part series today rather than tomorrow like I was originally planning, for obvious reasons.
After a great response last week to the Part 1 article, and even better than that, a large amount of action that has been taken by my readers (a special shoutout to those who purchased a reusable coffee cup!) Part 2 needs to be taken with a pinch of salt. This is where the steps get a little harder, however, the benefits from the following will be even greater than the first three changes or tips suggested last week. I’m going to delve straight into it.
4. Read and Recycle (bottles)
I’m talking cosmetics and chemicals here. I was once told that you should never put any products on your body or on your cutlery that have ingredients in them that you can’t pronounce, and that you wouldn’t drink. Obviously, I don’t expect you to only use shampoos and dishwashing detergents that you would be willing to ingest, because that would just be absurd. Unless you like the taste of soap, who knows that might be your thing. I challenge you to go into your bathroom right now, and pick up your shampoo bottle.
No really, do it.
Come on get up!
Ok, I hope you actually did it. Turn it over and have a read of the ingredients. If that bad boy starts off with Water (Aqua) and then goes onto list about 13 ingredients that you cannot pronounce, that each contain more than ten letters, and you wouldn’t dare put them in your mouth, then you've got to change something up. The reason I mention ingesting your shampoo, body wash, moisturiser etc., is because everything you put on your body seeps through your pores and into your bloodstream. Your pores literally eat whatever goes on your skin. So if you wouldn't eat it directly, why would you let your pores ingest it? It all goes in either way. The moral of the story is - try to get some better, more organic, higher quality products that contain less fragrances, less parabens, less chemicals. Not only is all that bad stuff seeping into your brain when you wash your hair, or going down the trap when you eat off a freshly cleaned plate, but it eventually goes down the drain into our waterways, into our oceans and into the mouths of marine life.
To add to this point, when you throw out your chemical filled, bad for you and the environment products after reading this (because you should and I hope you will) make sure you clean the bottles out and recycle them correctly. Don't just chuck them straight in the bin, because you will end up doing more harm then good.
5. Ditch the Cheap Water Bottle
I know, I know, we’ve all been in a situation where we are in such dire need of water that we make the guilty decision to purchase a Mount. Franklin bottle. Yes, $3.50 of your life just went towards 500ml of water. What an investment. Not.
This really is probably the easiest of all the tips on here. Carry a reusable water bottle around with you! Preferably a metal or BPA free one too. Not only are cheap water bottles a waste of money, they are a complete waste of plastic. Why? Because when you purchase them, you are usually in a public place, or slightly drunk at 1am. Does drunk 1am you try and find a recycle bin? No. Drunk 1am you never has a clue what happens to your water bottle after you purchase it and probably share it around with your friends (which is pretty gross really). Further more, if you think reusing one of these is a good alternative, you're wrong again. Especially if you leave them in your car. The cheap, thin plastics used literally leaches into the water your drinking, so you effectively drink stale H2O with a side of toxic chemicals. Very appetising. Needless to say, I think you get the point. Stop wasting your money, your health and the environment on cheap bottles, whenever you can.
6. Cut out Cheese or Chicken
This is where most of you will slam the laptop screen down. HOW DARE SHE THREATEN MY CHICKEN NUGGETS AND MY WINE AND CHEESE NIGHTS AND EVERYTHING ELSE THAT IS GOOD IN THE WORLD is definitely what you are most likely thinking right now.
Well, well, well. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am absolutely 110% obsessed with cheese. If you know me, and you didn’t know that, then you probably don’t know me at all. I would literally eat cheese by the block. If I was hungry, I would go to my fridge, cut a block of cheese, and munch on that. Every possible meal I could add cheese too, I did. Even in public, I would still put an embarrassing amount of cheese on my pasta. The common joke by my Dad and my comedic friends was “Would you like some spaghetti with that cheese.” But I have turned into a walking, talking meme. I have gone plant based/vegan or whatever other label you want to put on it. I am in no way telling you to go vegan! Do not stress. I still have my cheat meals, and the casual spread of butter every now and then, I’m not super strict or anything, and am not in anyway against meat eating and dairy consumption because trust me, I miss the stuff.
However, the main reason for this change that I made, about two months ago now, was the environment. The agriculture industry is completely destroying the ozone layer. The amount of toxic gas that is produced by the production of meat and dairy products all over the world is absolutely insane. If you want more information on this, or simply don’t believe me, I would highly recommend watching any of the documentaries on Netflix about this, because they completely changed my perspective on the food I put on my plate. As I previously stated, I am not suggesting that you go cold turkey. But by cutting out chicken or cheese, even one or two days a week, your consumption of these products will drastically decrease. I have said chicken or cheese because I know that basically everyone loves the stuff. Just give it a go, even if it is just for one day a week. If you want me to write a whole blog post on moving towards a plant based diet I am totally down for that, just let me know.
Now that I have probably shocked and offended you with that last tip/change (love to leave things on a dramatic note), I really hope that you guys have enjoyed this series, and that you actually make these small changes in your life. We rely so heavily on the earth, but often forget that it relies on us even more so. On World Environment Day, make a change.