When you mention eco-living to many people, there is still the misconception that this is something super hard, expensive, and for the ‘hippies’ of the world. Well, that’s definitely not true. We can all do small things every day to make a difference, and it doesn’t have to break the bank. In yoga, we talk about ‘ahimsa’ meaning non harm. This means to ourselves, to others, to animals and to the planet. It’s all too easy to feel we are insignificant, that our actions can’t or won’t change things, but if we all start with small changes, EVERYTHING can make a difference.
So here are some things I do in my life which are pretty easy for anyone to do. I was never an ‘eco warrior’ in my younger years but increasingly, I know we are all one, and our planet is being destroyed but our actions.
* Get a water filter. The UAE is believed to have one of the highest rates of bottled water consumption in the world with each resident drinking an average of 250 litres of bottled water a year. A horrifying statistic. Try Liquid of Life for an affordable solution. It will save you money!
* Eat less meat. Meat farming is the leading cause of global warming, water depletion and pollution, ocean dead zones, habitat loss and many more. It takes 2,500 litres of water to make one hamburger, one third of the planet has been desertified due to livestock farming and a farm with 2,500 dairy cows produces the same amount of waster as a city of 411,000 people. Need we know more? I don’t say cut it out, because these are really personal decisions, but reducing can be just as important. (*source Cowspiracy)
* Reduce waste by reusing. All those glass jars you use, can you use them again? I get through a lot of products like honey, so I always keep the jars and use them again for storage of various things. That bag of coffee can go in there, you can pop a nice water infusion in there, plenty of ideas. Ditch the plastic tupperware with all the chemical nasties like BPA which leech into our foods.
* Buy organic and local where you can. I use Greenheart organic farms here in the UAE as the food is as local as owner Elena can get, from the UAE and surrounding countries, is affordable and best of all, delivered to my door (any excuse to avoid another shopping trip). Transporting foods contributes to a huge carbon footprint, conventional farming is known to be more energy consumptive, and the chemicals used for conventional farming are not only bad for our health, but are killing the environment, wildlife and eco system around us too
* Make your own products where you can. This isn’t to say we’ll all be making our own shampoo any time soon, though people do, but if you can make things like your own body scrubs (I make this with rock salt, sugar, coconut oil and ground almonds for example), which is not only saving you money, but saving you from all the chemicals added to products. Things which go on our skin aren’t tested like things we ingest, yet what goes ON our skin, goes IN our skin. So get Googling, and find out how easy it is to ditch not only the plastics of bought products, but the chemicals you’re putting on your body too. Home made face masks here we come!