Gardening

How going green can boost your health

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Gardening

How going green can boost your health

With all the emphasis on green living, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed when trying to decide the best way to incorporate healthy, earth-friendly choices into our lives. Where to start? What will make the biggest impact? How difficult will it be?  Fear not – with this quick list you'll soon be on your way to a more eco-friendly lifestyle, all the while improving your health.

1. Leave the car at home

By walking or biking to work you can do your part in lowering the amount of greenhouse gases and other pollutants released into the environment, and get in shape at the same time. According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation you should be getting between 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity a day to lower your risk of heart disease and stroke, and help control risk factors like high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

If walking or biking aren't options, take public transportation and get off a stop or two early so that you can get in a quick walk before you start work -- not only is it good for the heart, but you'll feel alert and refreshed as you begin your day. To track the distance you cover in a day, and the calories burned per walk, check out the Gmaps pedometer.

2. Eat locally
By buying locally, you eliminate the need for wasteful long-haul transportation that burns precious fossil fuels and pollutes the air with greenhouse gases. Additionally, fresh local produce is better for your healthbecause you can reduce or avoid the packaging, waxes, gases, fungicides, and irradiation long-distance food is treated with in order to prevent spoilage.

And if that wasn't enough reason to make the switch, when buying locally grown foods you'll also get fresher, more nutritious and better tasting food because it is harvested at its peak and brought directly to you, instead of being picked early and left to ripen in warehouses and on shelves while in transit. When you're at your grocery store, look for Canadian products, especially those from your home province.

Page 1 of 2 -- Learn how to make your own eco-friendly cleaning products on page 2
3. Say hello to eco-friendly household cleaners
By switching to eco-friendly household cleaners, you can make a difference in your indoor air quality. You'll also be helping the environment, as these products won't pollute our waterways.

With many great and effective green cleaning brands available, it's easy to find one to suit your needs. Or, you can go one step further and make your own cleaning products using simple household items like white vinegar, lemon juice and baking soda.

4. Choose eco-friendly paints and finishes
Thankfully the decor world has jumped on the eco-friendly bandwagon and finding low-VOC (volatile organic compound) and non-VOC paint at your most mainstream paint supplier is a snap. Opt for these new, water-based paints the next time you freshen up your living space.

Not only are low-VOC and non-VOC paints better for the environment, they're also easy to clean up and produce little to no odour and off-gassing during or after application.

Check out Earth Easy to find more on the eco-friendly options available for your next redecorating project.

Read more:
Make your bathroom eco-friendly
10 simple ways to cut energy consumption
10 ways to freshen up the air, naturally!

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Gardening

How going green can boost your health

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