As you all know, I believe strongly in a vegan lifestyle. This is for three big reasons:
- Ethical Reasons: I do it so animals can, one day, can live out of chains.
- Health Reasons: among many health benefits, did you know that a vegan lifestyle is a huge contributor to cancer prevention? There was even been cases of cancer recovery once the individual started a vegan diet.
- The environment: did you know it takes 10-20x more land and resources to feed a carnivore than it does to feed a vegan? This affects forests, water consumption, carbon emissions, etc.
Helping cure the planet of human harm is a really important cause to me. Let’s talk about one of the easiest ways to start! Plastic is one of the most harmful human-made products to the environment; currently, there are about 5.25 trillion bits of plastic floating around the ocean, both on the surface and below. This gets consumed by fish, turtles, and other ocean life, and often ends up back on your plate in your fish and chips.
So how can we help? Here a few of the easiest and most effective ways to start moving towards a disposable plastic-free lifestyle.
1. Get yourself some reusable straws.
Did you know plastic straws are not recyclable? And, because of their shape, they often end us choking fish and in turtles’ noses. Even McDonald’s is beginning to shift towards compostable paper straws. There are many available options for metal, reusable, easy to clean straws from many stores. You can get some from Amazon here. There are other size and colour options, as well. Good ones will come with a spoolie for easy cleaning. They are also available at local retailers. This is a small change that can make a big difference!
2. Reusable grocery bags – including produce bags!
Everyone knows about reusable grocery bags – but do you think about your produce bags? On average, I use 4-6 produce bags per grocery trip. That’s a minimum of 16 per months and 208 per years! Those bags are not recyclable, and, even more so, they look like yummy jellyfish to turtles when floating in the ocean.
So what to do? I switch to reusable produce bags, and I couldn’t be happier. I have these ones and they are durable, machine washable, and the perfect size.
3. Ditch the throw-away cups and bottles
Every day, millions of water bottles and coffee cups are throw away, and often not even recycled. How about this: find a reusable mug or bottle that you love, and take it everywhere! A lot of coffee shops even offer discounts for people with their own mugs. Every time I use my reusable mug at my local coffee shop, I feel a little bit of guilt coming off my shoulders (and it kind of comes back when I use it at Starbucks, haha).
4. Diva Cup
Hey ladies. You know what costs a fortune? Tampons. Not only that, but they come with that plastic piece that I never recycled out of sheer embarrassment. But huzzah – there is a solution. Diva Cups (and other brands) are reusable cups; I have to admit, I was iffy and a tad bit grossed out by them for about a year. But, I finally tried one, and I have to say: I will never, ever go back. Not only do I not have to carry a thousand tampons with me everywhere, but I saved a lot of money too. I got mine off Amazon (if you can’t tell,I buy just about everything there). It cost 30CAD, and it’s going to last me up to 15 years (!!!!!!). If that’s not really your thing, washable pads are also an option.
5. Glass food containers
Personally, reusable food containers are the way to go – they keep your food fresher than plastic wrap and tinfoil, and are 1000x better for the environment. Also, good ones will double as a container and an oven tray, meaning you can cook your meal the night before, put the lid on and stash it in the fridge, and take it to work the next morning! Pyrex are my personal favourite; however, the Dollar Store has some great ones with snap on lids (although, I have no idea if they’re oven safe. Considering it’s the Dollar Store, I’d say most likely not, haha).
So what will you do to reduce your plastic footprint? Start by thinking about any single use plastic you have in your life – there’s probably a reusable option. And if you’re not sure where to start, let me know in the comments and I’ll try and find something for you!
By the way. I realized all the links I’ve provided for you are for Amazon.. as well all know, shipping can be expensive! However, I have a Prime account and to be honest, I will never NOT have a Prime account again. Whenever I need something, Amazon is the first place I go! So if you’re interested in trying it out but are afraid to pull the trigger, don’t worry – they offer a free one month trial, no strings attached.