Posted on by Paula Gallagher
Aside from the environmental impact of moving toward a more green lifestyle, there are also many financial benefits. But as important as saving money is for most people, perhaps it is not the most important benefit; you can realize terrific health benefits from living a greener lifestyle, as well.
5 Health Benefits of Green Lifestyle Choices
1. A healthier heart
Regular exercise has obvious health benefits. By walking or riding a bike to replace your car for short trips, you get some cardio exercise and save gas and reduce carbon emissions all at once. Even taking the bus or train will help, since you can walk or bike to and from the bus stop or train station.
2. A healthier diet
Buying locally-produced food saves on fuel for transporting that food to the market, and smaller local growers are more likely to offer organically-grown produce that is fresher, as well. Shopping at farmers markets is a good way to find these items, making sure your food is pesticide-free. In addition, reducing consumption of meat lowers your carbon footprint due to the greater amounts of energy, water and resources used to produce meat, compared to vegetables. And eating less red meat is good for almost everyone's health.
3. Healthier drinking
Bottled water is one of the least green items around. The chemicals used to produce the bottles are largely derived from petroleum, and some of those can leach into the water causing low-level contamination. And regardless of what type of plastic bottle is used, bottled water is not necessarily purer than tap water, just much more expensive. Drinking plenty of tap water, filtered as necessary depending on where you live, is the greenest and healthiest option.
4. Healthier breathing
Planning any remodeling this year? Using low VOC paint (VOC stands for volatile organic compounds) is healthier for your family due to the lower amount of airborne toxins. Your whole family, as well as your pets, will benefit from this simple step.
5. Healthier lighting
Using natural sunlight instead of electricity to light your rooms during the day will definitely save you some money, but there are even health benefits from this simple practice. Sunlight helps in the body's production of vitamin D, assuming some of that sunlight coming through the windows reaches your body directly. Natural light can also be a mood booster, especially with shorter winter days.
Almost everyone's health can be improved in each of these five ways by establishing greener living habits. And I probably don't need to remind you that you will usually save some money, too.
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