Do some research to discover what foods have grown in your area historically. Ideally this research would be informed by local museums and–if you’re located in the U.S.–Native North American groups who are so kind as to share their knowledge with the general public.
You can’t over-estimate the importance of eating not only organic, but LOCAL food. For example, check out this local edible greens guide created by a group at U.C. Berkeley: The Bay Area Baker’s Dozen Wild Edibles. View this very informative video about how to harvest and process acorns. Or, consider growing some of these seed varieties native to American tribes.
Switching to a credit union or locally-based, community bank is an important step. This allows you to take control of your overall impact on ecological and social well being, as well as reducing personal banking costs.
Article: Goodbye Wells Fargo; Hello Credit Union on Mother Jones
Article: 7 Easy Steps to Switch Banks Without Worry on Moneycrashers.com
Offset Your Travel & Power Use
While carbon offsetting is not the ultimate answer, as we work toward a more sustainable world it can sure help to plant some trees and otherwise make improvements. Check out one or more of these offset organizations.
Watch this great presentation about food safety. Key point: The U.S. has the highest rates of cancer in the WORLD.
Then, visit the Environmental Working Group: Consumer Guides to guide you through better food and other product choices.
Whether you live in an urban or rural environment, whether it’s sunny or cloudy, a few minutes outside can change the course of your day for the better. Breath deeply and access your human ability to appreciate the world around you. It may sound corny, but we need the inspiration of the real world as food to feed our souls and recharge our commitment to protect and regenerate it.
If you enjoy reading outside, bring this book with you: The Spell of the Sensuous, by David Abram. (Buy a nice used copy from Better World Books or another source!) The book facilitates reconnecting with the natural world by appealing to the mind, senses and spirit.
“As we reacquaint ourselves with our breathing bodies, then the perceived world itself begins to shift and transform…The countless human artifacts with which we are commonly involved–the asphalt roads, chain-link fences, telephone wires, buildings, lightbulbs, ball point pens, automobiles, street signs, plastic containers, newspapers, radios, television screens–all being to exhibit a common style, and so to lose some of their distinctiveness; meanwhile, organic entities–crows, squirrels, the trees and wild weeds that surround our house, humming insects, streambeds, clouds and rainfalls–all these begin to display a new vitality, each coaxing the breathing body into a unique dance…In contact with the native forms of the earth, one’s senses are slowly energized and awakened, combining and recombining in ever-shifting patterns. ~David Abram, pg. 63
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