Thursday, March 20, 2008

The End of the World...

Recipes for the end of the world?? Well, that may be a bit dramatic, but there’s no denying that the earth is in serious crisis. Our unwavering need to consume and repopulate has led to problems that are spiraling out of control. From global warming to overpopulation, we face unrelenting problems that need to be addressed.

With our natural resources such as water and fossil fuels becoming more and more limited, we need to take a serious look at how we can reduce our consumption and conserve what little resources we have left. One major area we can change is our relationship with food and the way we eat.

Albert Einstein once said that “nothing will benefit human health and increase chances of survival for life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.” While I’ve learned from experience that it’s nearly impossible to convince most people to stop eating meat, I do believe that everyone has room for improvement when it comes to their diet. Here are some things I believe we can all do to help:

  • Buy Local. One major way to cut down on fossil fuel consumption is to buy produce grown as close to you as possible. A lot of what you see in the stores has traveled hundreds, even thousands of miles to get there. Buying local not only cuts down on transportation and the pollution it causes, it also means your food is fresher!
  • Use What’s in Season. This one is directly related to buying local. Here in the U.S. we’ve become so spoiled with being able to buy nearly any type of fruits or vegetables we want year round. But just because we can buy tomatoes in December doesn’t mean we should. Those tomatoes have been shipped halfway around the world to get there. Figure out what’s in season and plan your menus around that.
  • Eat Unprocessed Food. Not only does it taste better when you cook your own food, it also cuts down on the energy and packaging involved in preparing and shipping pre-made food items. You also avoid preservatives and other nasty things like high-fructose corn syrup when you cook for yourself.
  • Support Organic Farms. Everyday our water sources are becoming more and more polluted. One major source of that pollution is conventional farming. Pesticides and fertilizers are washed away into our streams, rivers, and oceans, causing a chain reaction of negative effects. By supporting organic farms, we cut down on the pollutants and decrease harmful effects on the environment.

By becoming connected to our food, we become more connected to the earth. Understand where you’re food comes from, how it’s grown, what it took to get it to your table. Your body and the earth will thank you later.


Tyler said...

You know, as much as I have given you a hard time for being a vegan, I like some of these ideas. I'm a long way away from adopting them (convenience and cost being two big factors), but the principles are pretty solid.

Great job with the blog! I like that it has a theme.

Amy Carter said...

Blog's are taking over the world!! :/

I agree with every word you said. I would love to buy foods that are in season, but have no idea which ones are. Can you please post a list of what foods we should be buying each season??

I make a huge effort not to buy foods with high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, artificial colors, or artificial sweeteners in the ingredients. I've found that shopping at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods makes this much easier. At your average grocery store, yogurt, english muffins, and 'healthy' whole grain breads have HFCS in them. No wonder the world keeps getting fatter.

ps. keep it up with the recipies! and try to throw some simple/quick ones in there, so people like me can use them.

Ashley said...

I love the blog, Ashley! I like the idea of buying local produce. Do you have any good recommendations for stores? Like Tyler said, convenience usually makes me just stop by Safeway but if there is a convenient local place, I'd go there. Your lasagna looked beautiful. It reminded me of this blog that you might like:

She is the queen of recipe posting. It's not vegan or anything, but you should check it out anyway. I read them for fun.

Molly said...

I was so excited that I got my produce at the Milk Pail, thinking it was all local. Yesterday I went to peel the sticker off my plum (which is obviously not in season--and didn't taste very good), and it said "Product of Chile." So much for the local store being all local. I think I'll have to pay more attention. It's amazing that we eat fruit that has been shipped all the way from the other end of the Americas...

Look at this: