How Our Food Choices Impact the Environment

What we eat matters, yes for our health, but also for the health of the environment. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, the food choices we make every day have a big effect on the environment. There are so many processes that go into taking our food from farm to table, including production, processing and transportations, all of which use lots of energy. The good news is that even small changes in what we buy and eat can add up to real environmental benefits, including fewer toxic chemicals, reduced global warming emissions and preservation of our ocean resources. Eating “green” can also mean eating fresher, healthier foods while reducing your grocery bill and supporting our farmers. 

Here are some easy (food-related) ways that we can all support the environment:

  • Support local farmers by buying whole, locally produced foods such as fruits and vegetables to avoid the extra energy costs associated with the production and transportation of processed foods.
  • Buy organic dairy products to ensure that you are not promoting the use of growth hormones or antibiotics in cows.
  • Choose certified organic meats to avoid contributing to the widespread use of antibiotics.
  • Eat species of fish that aren’t overfished and are also lowest in mercury and other toxins (those highest in mercury and should be avoided include mackerel, swordfish, tilefish and bigeye and ahi tuna).
  • Instead of bottled water, buy a reusable water container that is BPA-free certified. Also use a water filter at home and at work.
  • Use sustainable, reusable storage containers.

Heather Bauer, RD CDN
Heather Bauer, RD CDN


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