Green lifestyles are becoming more and more popular due to all the informative articles on the internet and the popularity of doing some good for the environment. It’s not unusual to see people even trading in their cars for the sake of going green. There are plenty of health benefits and, contrary to popular belief, it’s a lot cheaper living a green and natural lifestyle than it is using copious amounts of toxic products and synthetic chemicals around the home.
But is it really worth going green? It honestly depends on what you want to achieve. If you simply want to make savings to your monthly expenses, then going green is a great way to save money and budget more efficiently. If you want to live a healthier lifestyle, then going green is something that can make a huge difference to the health of you and your family. Simply want to do some good for the environment? Then the best way is to get rid of all the harmful habits you have and save the planet one good deed at a time.
If this all sounds tempting and interesting, then here are a few ways to go green, the advantages they provide and also how to make the switch.
Green Cleaning Products
It should come as no surprise that many cleaning products bought from supermarket shelves contain copious amounts of toxic chemicals that are bad for your health. For example, phthalates are often used in nice-smelling household products such as soap, cleaning sprays and even air fresheners. There are laws protecting the manufacturers because they don’t actually need to list the ingredients in their scents. This is to prevent the secret of the scent being stolen or copied by someone else, but there’s a high chance that if it’s a well-known brand that creates mass quantities of a product, they probably use phthalates. Phthalates are harmful especially to men because they harm sperm count. Too much exposure to phthalates can also affect your skin because the toxins are absorbed directly into the body and will negatively affect your organs.
Phthalates are just one of the many chemicals added to our cleaning products in order to make them more suitable for household use. Fortunately, you can get cleaners here that are all-natural and don’t contain any of those nasty chemicals. This makes them safe for the entire family including your children and babies. The younger your children, the more susceptible they are to the harmful effects of these toxic cleaners, so keep them safe by using natural cleaners that won’t pollute the air with anything harmful.
However, you might find that natural cleaning products can be quite costly. Although it’s worth every penny spent for the convenience and peace of mind, you might find that switch to homemade cleaning products can be equally as effective and reduce the costs of your household expenses. A great way all-purpose natural cleaner can be made from just white vinegar, water, baking soda and some essential oils such as eucalyptus. Simply mix half a cup of white vinegar with two tablespoons of baking soda and about 5 drops of essential oils. Pour this into a clean spray bottle, then fill the rest with water. For a more potent mix, add a bit more vinegar and baking soda. Shake it inside of the bottle and presto, you have a non-toxic cleaner to use everywhere around the home. It can be made in batches for a low price and you don’t even have to go out of your way to buy those products. Baking soda can be used for a variety of different things, vinegar can be used in cooking and essential oils are fantastic for unwinding after a long day with a diffuser.
Green eating doesn’t mean just eating vegetables or turning vegan. A green diet really just means a healthy diet, and you don’t need to buy ridiculous books, magazines and self-help guides in order to get the most from your diet. Eating healthily is one of the essential pillars of a natural lifestyle, and the more you invest into it the better your results.
A healthy diet sounds scary because a lot of health foods cost more than regular foods. For example, buying a salad at a restaurant usually costs around the same as the main course, and all it contains is some protein and a bunch of vegetables that aren’t even cooked. While this seems like overkill (and it is) you can make the exact same meal at some without spending a fortune. Don’t believe the health food hype and don’t buy anything packaged if you want to eat healthily.
Instead, focus on switching out your bad habits for better ones. For instance, if you snack on things like chocolate peanuts, chips and candy, then switch them out for slices of apple, banana or even grapes. If you want a healthy snack that you can eat without feeling guilty, then consider baby carrots with a homemade hummus dip. Not only is buying natural fruits and vegetables cheaper than packaged snacks, it’s far more healthy. Another good replacement is to swap out sugary soda for diet soda first, then carbonated flavored water, and then finally just water.
Another great way to take advantage of a greener lifestyle at home is to grow your own fruits and vegetables. Although this depends on your location and the amount of sunlight you get, making your own greenhouse at home or turning a patch of land you own into a vegetable garden isn’t very difficult. The seeds are inexpensive and with a bitch of research, you could grow your own produce in your backyard. This is a fantastic way to save money, but also helps promote a green and self-sufficient lifestyle that is becoming popular among families all across the world.
Our planet has a finite amount of resources. Eventually, all the oil and coal that we burn is going to be used up and we’ll have to rely on things like wind turbines and solar energy in order to sustain our electricity usage. This is why many people are starting to be more conscious about their energy usage. They don’t just pick the green options either, but they’ll go out of their way to research how much energy consumption their devices are using and cut down just to save the environment.
But this isn’t great for just saving the planet. Cutting down on energy costs and using green energy can make you huge savings over a long period of time. For instance, a solar panel can be a costly investment for your home especially if you’ve just taken out a mortgage, but it’s a fantastic way to save money if you don’t plan to move house for the next decade or two. Solar panels take a while before they become cost effective, but that’s not an issue if you’re willing to invest in future energy savings.
Even if you can’t afford a solar panel (not many people can, honestly!) then there are still some fantastic ways to lower your energy bills and save the planet. For instance, the standby feature on our devices can soak up an incredible amount of power if you aren’t careful. Leaving your laptop on sleep mode instead of shutting it down can be costly. Instead of simply putting your computer and devices on standby, shut them down then turn off the power at the mains so that they don’t continue to draw power. The cost of leaving your appliances in standby mode can add up and it’s not worth the minute or so of time you save by booting up something from sleep mode instead of turning it on.
Making the switch and becoming a family that worries about its energy usage can be difficult especially if your children have lots of video game consoles and smart devices, but it’s made easier if you teach your children and partner energy-saving tips early on. There are lots of small changes you can make, such as turning off lights that aren’t in use, looking for energy efficient appliances and installing timer controls to adjust heating when it’s needed instead of keeping it on. These all contribute to the greater good and it’s one of the most effective ways of going green and saving money.
These are just three ways to cut down on expenses and also contribute to the planet. These aren’t the only ways to go natural, but they’re definitely three of the biggest factors when it comes to living a greener lifestyle. As shown in the points above, going green isn’t expensive and it’s not difficult. By just making a couple of changes to your lifestyle every week, you can make a real difference to the world and prepare your children for a sustainable future by reducing waste and being more conscious about their spending. It’s definitely worth it not just for the environment and your wallet, but also for your health.