Recently, we wrote about how destructive fast fashion is for the environment and, if you think about it, for our wallet. But clothing is only a small part of the consumer basket of most modern urban residents: about 30% of our budget is spent on food and products. So why not make our purchases more economical and reasonable, especially if it benefits not only you and your family, but also the environment? About this and other aspects of informed consumption in today’s ClearLife article.
The problem of modern consumer culture
Modern realities and the economy are tuned for speed: we do not have time to get used to one smartphone, as a newer and faster one already appears, the value of food is now not in quality, but in the convenience of cooking and ease of use, we can fly around half the world in a week and get in a day more information than our near-ancestors in our entire lives . And such an overload around us is fraught with unpleasant consequences not only for our health and the planet: it also makes us unwise to spend money on things that, by and large, we do not need and do not bring corresponding pleasure.
Some 40-50 years ago, people in the general mass were much more reverent and careful about what surrounded them: food, clothing, household items, cars, relationships. That which was broken, repaired and repaired, but not thrown away and not replaced by a new one. People cooked and ate a lot at home, the amount of plastic and packaging was many times less , and everything in life had great ritualism and value
The life of a modern person is filled with endless spending on things that, on the one hand, make life easier and faster, and on the other hand, undermine our health, take away the opportunity to enjoy life and appreciate the abundance that we are surrounded by. We drink coffee from capsules or take it in a take-away paper cup on the way to work, we usually buy lunch in packaging and eat it in five minutes, looking at the computer. Most of the day is spent in cars and public transport in order to save time that would have to devote to walking. We spend thousands on gym memberships to strengthen the body on treadmills that eat kilowatts of electricity. And at the same time we are becoming less and less happy and healthy. At How to Green, we value all the opportunities that information and technological progress gives us, but,
Quality VS quantity
Quality is better than quantity for everything in your life: health, relationships, fashion, beauty, and well-being and interaction with the environment. We take responsibility for this statement, because we can’t come up with any sphere in life where the principle “better less is better” would not work. Take food and health: many people think that healthy and wholesome foods are more expensive, but that’s not at all. Cereals, local and seasonal vegetables and fruits, legumes cost less lunch in a cafe, and more expensive quality products like farm meat, dairy products with a short shelf life, wild fish and superfoods with a rationally built diet do not need to eat in large quantities. It’s much better and more beneficial to eat a small piece of animal product of the highest quality available to you a couple of times a week, than to use something with a lot of preservatives and dyes every day. And a more reasonable and natural diet will support your health, which will help reduce the cost of medical services and medicines, which often cost a lot.
Choosing better products, you support conscientious consumption and manufacturers: the more demand there is, the more they will have the opportunity to develop, which ultimately can make quality products more affordable.
If we talk about the environment, the production of meat products takes a huge amount of resources , the current scale of meat consumption really destroys our planet. And if you add to this the production of packaging – the consequences for the environment become even sadder. And the most interesting thing is that such an excessive consumption of animal products is completely unjustified: modern studies increasingly show that moderate calorie content, especially with age, is one of the mechanisms for prolonging health and youth. And if you make vegetable products the basis of the diet, then for a large number of meat, fish and dairy products there is no place left.
How to effectively distribute financial resources, leading a healthy lifestyle?
The first and main thing to do is to change the internal attitude so that you and your body deserve the best food and the best conditions. Give yourself time to readjust to a new perception and in times of doubt remember that in the long run (and most likely, even after a couple of weeks) it will improve your well-being and teach you to use your finances and resources more efficiently.
Choose the highest quality products.
Organic fruits and vegetables, of course, are often more expensive than usual, but at the same time they are much tastier. And one natural fruit will bring more benefits than a kilogram of processed chemicals.
Give preference to local and seasonal products.
Healthy eating and informed consumption do not imply overseas strawberries in January and superfoods with an unpronounceable name. This does not mean that you need to give up bananas and stop eating dried fruits, but the basis of the diet should be created from what is grown and made in the nearest regions.
Buy large quantities of foods that last longer
Favorite cereals and legumes feel great in large glass jars, large volumes of nuts can be stored for a long time in the refrigerator, some products, such as berries or vegetables, can be safely frozen. When you buy food in large quantities, you end up spending less, reducing the amount of packaging and providing yourself with a supply of healthy food.
Do your best at home.
Homemade nut milk, homemade whole-grain flour, urbeci – all this costs a lot of money in stores, and if you have a blender and coffee grinder, preparing them at home will not require much effort and time and will significantly reduce your costs.
Take home lunches with you.
If nobody in your circle does this, become an example: buy beautiful containers, cook something simple, quick and useful. Boiled cereals, hummus, chopped vegetables and fruits for dessert can become a full-fledged lunch at work, which will cost several times less than any business lunch or sandwich in a cafe, and will bring much more benefit to your health and environment.
Be smart about water and electricity.
We do not urge you to refuse to take a bath or to read in the dark, but you can turn off the water while you brush your teeth and leave the light in the whole apartment in the same room, probably not entirely reasonable and certainly uneconomical.
Spend more time outdoors and away from screens
Communication with nature, the natural movement in the form of walks, outdoor training and time with loved ones – the most important thing you can do for your health and happiness , and all this costs no money and helps to live in greater harmony with nature.
A healthy lifestyle is a very natural state that not only allows us to feel good, but also teaches us to more rationally distribute our resources and protect nature. Even small changes, such as a walk to work or a cooked dinner at home, produce very large effects that will delight your physical and emotional state and save you from completely unnecessary expenses. And the world around you will also thank you for this!