1. Go vegan (ish)
Researchers at the University of Oxford found that changing to a vegan diet could reduce your carbon footprint by 73%!
And while there are certain health issues to take into account (I suggest you talk to a nutritionist if you want to become all out vegan), going vegan also puts you at lower risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease, without a doubt. So if those diseases are in your family in particular, then you definitely want to consider this option.
Of course like any behaviour change the key is to start small. You don't have to become vegan overnight, or even at all (I'm not!). You can just choose to swap certain foods over time. Or be vegan at home and an omnivore when you're out ('out out').
(Ps need some vegan recipe inspiration? DM me for your free copy of my vegan ENERGISE 5 day meal plan for mums).
2. Get on your bike (more)
According to the World Health Organisation, 'Sedentary lifestyles increase all causes of mortality, double the risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and obesity, and increase the risks of colon cancer, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, lipid disorders, depression and anxiety'. Phewf.
PLUS, transport (mostly road transport) is responsible for nearly a quarter of Europe's Co2 emissions. Blimey! And that's not even to mention the air quality that worsens diseases like asthma.
So, why not challenge yourself to not use your car for a whole week OR walk/cycle at least one
journey you normally do by car. Or if you're already doing that, up the ante and put your car out of action for a month. See what big changes come as a result of that.
(And if you're not sure your fitness or bike confidence is up to that, find out more about my Personal Training packages including Pedal PT).
3. Swap your skin care products
You might already be trying to eat more healthily but what about skin care?
My holistic health mentor and trainer Jenny Burrell first introduced to me the now obvious notion that our skin is our largest organ and one of the gateways to the bloodstream and rest of our body. And yet we often neglect it or slap on any old moisturiser, make up, deodorant and shower gel without a thought for what ingredients they contain.
We also may not think about where these ingredients come from or where they go. So if you want to upgrade your health in a truly holisitc way, as well as have a lighter impact on the Earth, look at your self-care products.
For skin care you could try UK based, The Green People, or you might like to have a go at making your own (coconut oil is my new favourite make up remover). And for overall self-care products like soap and deodrant, I love the range at Smallkind (use the code Heather at the checkout for 10% off every time).
4. Grow your own veg (at least some of it)
While you may not be able to feed your whole fmaily for even one roast dinner when you first endeavour to start growing your own veg, and while you'll learn a new level of hatred for certain small creatures like slugs, growing your own veg is the ultimate way to recude the carbon miles on some of what you eat. And of course, you'll use less or no sprays and pesticides that destroy the soil quality (did you know we may only have 60 years of growable soil left on this earth?)
Plus the positive vibes you get from spending more time active outside and feeling like you're living 'The Good Life' is priceless. Oh and socking it to those slugs feels pretty good too. You will NOT eat my last lettuce!
5. Do less (of what doesn’t matter so you can do more of what does)
One of the most chronic diseases of our time is .... busyness and one really simple way to reduce our stress as well as to impact positively on the environment is just to DO LESS!
Slow down. No need to book the kids in to all these after school activities. No need to organise parties and weekends away and home renovation projects. All of that stuff that we do-do-do, keeps us from a) resting and connecting and b) making space for the really important work, whatever that means to you.
For me it was setting up a local Climate Action group. For you it might be photography or spending time with family or writing to your local MP to get them to sign the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill.
Or, if you'd like a Stretch and unwind workout to help fill the void with all this un-busyness, head here.
So if you do nothing else from reading this, at least DO less.
Wishing you Health & Happiness,
PS join me and other mums on a mission to do less over in the Halt the Hustle FB group. With monthly free challenges to help you focus on YOU for a change.