Being conscious of our everyday choices and taking responsibility of how we leave the planet for future generations is a very noble task. But sometimes, it sounds so much more complicated than it actually is. With every major lifestyle change comes difficulties, there are two important reasons why most people steer away from adopting a greener lifestyle - it takes tremendous effort to find alternatives and stick to it, and two, it can be pretty heavy on the pocket if you don’t know what you’re doing. But frankly, it doesn’t have to be this way. Find below 5 simple swaps that will allow you to live a more sustainable lifestyle that doesn’t demand assiduous effort or a truckload of money from you.
If we put our daily choices and their impact on the planet into perspective, it is not very hard for us to wrap our heads around the fact that thousands of tons of clothes end up in the landfill each year; most of which will take thousands of years to completely breakdown and biodegrade.
While it is incredibly hard for most people to resist the lure of an ever-changing wardrobe, the least we can do as consumers is support brands and businesses that are conscious about their choices, and are mindful about the processes involved in the production of these outfits. Swap your synthetic fabrics such as polyester, nylons etc. for naturally-obtained materials such as cork, cotton, hemp and other materials that can breathe, so we can do the same for centuries to come.
If you rely heavily on meat, dairy and eggs to remain healthy, maybe it is time to rethink your nutrition game. Animal agriculture accounts for over 51% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions and is the number 1 contributor to deforestation, species extinction and global health epidemic. Even if you don’t feel like giving up meat, dairy and eggs, all at once, cutting your intake down to once or twice a week, to begin with, can make a massive difference. Experiment with mock-meats or straight up beans. Look online for recipes that will satisfy your cravings and we promise you won’t miss the meat.
Bring your own bottle or carry your own container to prevent from relying on takeaway boxes that need to be tossed after your dose of sustenance. Durable stainless steel or unbreakable glass boxes make for an impeccable alternative to plastic boxes, that leech chemicals into your food. They’re strong, stylish and sustainable, and will last for years before having to be replaced. When you absolutely need a disposable solution, choose parchment papers over ziplock bags, for the former can be composted and the latter cannot.
Don’t buy, borrow. Limiting your consumption is the single best way to reduce your environmental footprint. Be intentional about your investments and purchases, and reduce or reuse whenever possible. Always remember that small shifts can make a huge impact on the environment.
There you have it. We hope this inspired you to make some simple swaps in your everyday lives and adopt a more sustainable lifestyle. If you think we missed something, let us know in the comments below.
This article was contributed by Janardhan Pokala. Coming from the world of advertising, he's now on a quest to spread the message of veganism, compassion and love. He enjoys cycling, lifting and sitting by himself with a book and tea. Check out his work here.