The Diet-Climate Connection

How the foods we eat affect the planet we inhabit

Sure, saving energy is important, but other aspects of our lifestyles also have a considerable impact on climate change. The food choices we make – what  we eat, where  our food is grown, and how  it is grown – have a huge impact on the planet. You can help to reduce global warming by making more sustainable food choices.   Check out the links below, and learn what you  can do.


The Diet-Climate Connection

The Environmental Working Group has a great tip sheet about the importance of climate-friendly eating choices. Browse their website for healthy eating  tips

See also the United Nations’ Food and Climate Change: Healthy diets for a healthier planet.

Eat Less Meat & Dairy

You don’t have to be a vegetarian to have meat-free or dairy-free meals – just substituting a meal with beans or lentils 1-2 days each week can make a big difference on your global warming impact. Or you can reduce your impact by choosing more fish and chicken over red meat/dairy, as the former have a lower carbon footprint. Sign up for the Meatless Monday newsletter for tips and recipe ideas. See also NRDC blog post Less Beef, Less Carbon.

Eat More Local Foods

Because locally grown foods are transported shorter distances to your table, they use less fossil fuel and therefore have a lower impact on global warming. Moreover, since transportation takes time, local foods are usually fresher. And finally, buying locally grown foods supports Massachusetts farmers.

Eat More Organic Foods

Locally grown foods are often grown organically, so they don’t use fossil fuel based fertilizers. And eating them reduces your exposure to pesticides. See the Environmental Working Group’s shoppers guide to the “Dirty Dozen and Clean 15,” with lists of produce with the most and the least pesticide residue.


Reduce Food Waste

Reducing food waste is one of the easiest and best ways to lower your impact on the planet – and you can save money while doing it. See Green Needham’s Food Waste page

Growing Your Own Food

Growing some fruits and vegetables in your own back yard is easy and fun, and a great way to enjoy being outdoors. You don’t need much space, and some things can even be grown in pots on your deck or patio. Need some tips on how to start? Take a class or rent a bed with the Needham Community Farm. Or just dig a small plot in a sunny location and start planting!

Get online tips on how to get started from Eartheasy’s Backyard Vegetable Gardening 


Composting Your Own Food Waste

Some food waste is inevitable, but you can keep this out of the waste stream with a home compost bin. It’s easy – learn how with some basic home composting information.  Or, hire a home composting service.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *