In this day and age, we're surrounded by plastic. It's nearly impossible to live without it; our food and other consumables are packed in plastic, many products are made of plastic, we use plastic cups, cutlery and plates for "convenience." While many food products tout themselves as organic, they still have plastic packaging. Some plastic is obvious, other plastic is disguised; for example, we have micro-plastics in our personal care products, like exfoliating scrubs or tooth paste, which end up in the rivers and oceans, as sewage treatment facilities are not designed to filter micro-plastic beads.
Why should we start to de-plasticize our lives? Plastic lasts nearly forever and only a tiny little part gets recycled. Animals and sea life get entangled in plastic bags. Its additives mimic hormones like phthalates and BPA, both of which are well-known to cause serious health problems, like infertility, cancer and brain damage.
It is time to take action and decrease our plastic consumption. Even the small things count! Ready to decrease your plastic footprint? Here are 15 ways you can reduce your daily use of plastic:
Shopping? Plan ahead.
Take reusable bags to the supermarket and other shops (I always have some bags in the car) or use cardboard boxes for your shopping. Forget your bags? Think twice about using the store's one-use plastic bags. Opt for paper instead, and be sure to recycle it.
Cookware & Housekeeping
Use wooden spoons and other kitchen gadgets. Clean your home with wooden brushes.
Skip the Straw
Take you coffee mug with you to the coffee shop, and do not use straws.
A metal watering is so much more attractive and decorative than the ones made of plastic.
Eat with Your Hands!
Prepare your party with finger food and say no to plastic plates, cutlery and cups. If you need cutlery, buy wooden cutlery you can personalize and decorate with masking tape.
Buy clothes made of natural fibers (preferably organic), like cotton, wool, silk and hemp.
Buy in Bulk
Buy bulk and try to avoid individually wrapped products and snacks.
Wooden toys are much more attractive than plastic toys and teething babies will not ingest all the unhealthy ingredients.
Drink It Up
Use glass or stainless steel bottles and drink filtered tap water, avoid beverages in PET bottles.
Mind the Produce
Forego the plastic produce bags and purchase fruit and vegetables in cardboard boxes. Need to weigh them individually? Use paper bags.
Some stores offer refills on products like detergents and household cleaners. Even better, use homemade household cleaners, like vinegar, baking soda and lemon.
Use a comb made of horn or wood.
Check the ingredients of your personal care products and avoid micro-plastics in scrubs, tooth paste and other cosmetics.
Make your own yogurt and store it in glass jars.
Need a nibble? Take your snacks in a metal or wooden lunch box.
Did you know that Bisphenol A and phthalates are obesogens, hormone disruptors that make you and the generations to come fat? Another well-know obesogen is nicotine. By detoxing your body, you're helping to detox the environment!