Going green is a lifestyle choice often pitched through a sense of responsibility to the larger world. While this is certainly a factual assessment, there are other reasons to do so. Living green can improve your health and help the family pocketbook, making it not only the responsible choice, but also the premier choice for those trying to live long and healthfully.
Human beings need food and drink to live, obviously. But how that food is created can have a huge impact on the world around us. Industrial agriculture produces a lot of food but often does so at the cost of taking shortcuts and damaging the soil and economies of the market it originates from. Buying organic and local from ethical grocery stores is a great way to combat this problem with your pocketbook. By spending your money at these stores, you encourage the industry while simultaneously making sure your family gets the nutrients necessary for daily activities.
Poor air quality is a pervasive and insidious problem. While large-scale pollution is often noticeable in the form of discolored air and smog, smaller amounts of contaminants can also wreak havoc on your family’s respiratory systems. Even natural contaminants can be dangerous. Controlling outdoor air quality is more or less impossible, beyond doing your part to reduce emissions and favoring legislation to do the same. In your home, however, there is a lot more you can do. Change the filter on your air conditioner and regularly dust, vacuum, and sweep up.
Money is an extreme cause of stress today. Paying your family’s bills is likely something of concern. But living green can have a positive impact on your family’s bottom line. Reducing energy usage around the house has the pleasant side effect of cutting down on monthly gas and electric costs. Eating better, though sometimes expensive in terms of the foodstuffs bought, pays off in the avoidance of several childhood and adulthood health issues that come with medical bills. And driving less means less pain at the pump. All of this adds up to less stress.
Image via Flickr by fedeanimation
One bad modern habit is the overreliance on individual automobiles for transportation. While hybrids and full-electric cars help offset the damage somewhat, even these new technologies increase our carbon footprint by taxing the local power grid while charging. Carpooling and public transit help offset some of this, but simply walking and bicycling can offset even more. After all, both of those forms of transit use only the energy you already create. At the same time, walking more and riding a bike are two great ways to get some exercise. So, in a way, when you walk or bike, you are taking a trip to the gym while also getting where you need to go.
Ethical and healthy living is not just a pipe dream. With some simple lifestyle choices, you can ensure that you see the benefits of making the right life choices, both for yourself and for the world.