Food, one of the most important resources on this planet, is rapidly accelerating the global warming crisis. If you think about it, food isn’t environmentally regulated like cars or factories for a simple reason: eating one plate of food affects global warming very little and food is a basic necessity.
Yet, consuming food every day, such as red meat, will over time add up to lots of carbon dioxide emissions. You may ask yourself: why? The simple answer is that growing food takes lots of land, equipment, and water.
Your eating patterns can determine the amount of water used and greenhouse gas emissions. For example, if you eat meat every day, you use more water and indirectly contribute to the rise in methane (from cows and other farmed animals) and carbon dioxide (from the animals that are breed for consumption).
There are so many variables to which foods you should eat to save our planet, but the general rule is that meats contribute the highest to our greenhouse gas problem, whereas vegetables would greatly decrease our consumption of water and of other resources.
Beef produces around 26.5 kg of CO2 emissions per kg of food, and lamb is just under at 22.9 kg of CO2 per kg of food. On the contrary, eating white meats such as turkey or poultry would produce more than 4 times less CO2 per kg of food than popular red meats. Some vegetables that are excellent sources of protein and beneficial to the environment are lentils (which has a carbon footprint that is 43 times less than beef), beans, and mussels.
A weird exception to the list of environmentally friendly vegetables is asparagus. The main reason is that most asparagus is shipped from South America, and transporting them with gas-powered methods leads to higher CO2 emissions. Yet, there is another issue to the relation between food and global warming.
Food waste is another problem in America. Nearly 30–40% of all of our food supply is wasted! That’s the equivalent of taking a third of the food in your fridge and throwing it away. One way to change our habit of wasting produce is by not judging food based on its appearance at the grocery store or by not being entirely reliant on the expiration date on packagings, as they can be wrong. If you are worried about the expiration of food, you should discard it if there’s any mould or a weird smell.
The main problem is that almost nobody is aware that food choices have a huge impact on our utopian planet’s survival. I found out some good dietary eco-friendly options by meeting vegans on PeepX, who showed explained to me why being vegetarian is not just healthier for yourself but also for our planet. By knowing which eco-friendly foods to choose, you can improve our world for the better.