Thanksgiving was always my favorite holiday. No religion, just food, family, and friends (and usually lots of Football). Almost everyone I knew growing up would come back to town. It really added to the excitement of being home and feeling like a kid again. Never once, until recently, did I think about the impact this holiday has on our environment, our health, and the animals we eat. It turns out we can make this fun-filled holiday even greater.
I’ve put together a short & simple list that your family can use to feel better about the upcoming holiday season.
- Ditch The Meat: Americans slaughter approximately 45 million Turkeys for Thanksgiving (over 300 million each year in the USA year round ). Raising turkeys requires an immense amount of water and feed that we humans could consume directly, saving buckets in the process. I don’t know about you, but I always enjoyed the trimmings more than the bird anyway. Given the horrendous life-cycle for most turkeys, and the links between animal protein and numerous health issues, eliminating these birds from our plate will give us (and the birds) are lot more to be thankful for. Check out these tasty alternatives to cook at home or serve ready-made. You can even buy a whole ‘bird.’ You’ll find most of these products at large retailers like Fairway, Safeway, and Whole Foods, or simply buy them online. Go for it, you’ll be surprised how good it tastes.
- Eat Organic: Organic products have never been easier to find than now. With Costco, Walmart, and other major retailers lining their shelves with organic produce, you can ditch the conventional pesticide-laden foods that put a massive strain on our health and American soils. Make sure it has the USDA label. You can also talk to your grocer, as they may know which products are grown organically but don’t pay for the USDA seal, which can be quite expensive for small farms.
- Buy Local: We often forget how far most of the food we eat has to travel in order to reach our plate. A simple way to reduce the carbon footprint of our holiday fun is to buy your produce from a local farm. The bonus: it supports local farmers, allows them retain more profit, and it usually tastes better too. Win Win Win.
- Go Non-Dairy: Mashed Potatoes. Gravy. Sweet Potatoes. Stuffing. My stomach is growling just thinking about it. Though it may be growling because of my dairy allergy. Turns out I’m not alone, as many Americans suffer from dairy intolerance. Fortunately, there’s a boat-load of tasty recipes that avoid butter and milk. Come on, let your guests enjoy their Thanksgiving without needing to chug pepto-bismol to make it through the day. Have mercy!
- Donate Your Leftovers: Let’s face it. Thanksgiving is a day of excess. And while leftovers are arguably the best part of Thanksgiving, most of us usually throw food away after the holiday. Sadly, there are many Americans that go hungry each year. Donating those delicious leftovers to a local food bank will give another family the Thanksgiving they crave, and you can give that to them.
That’s it. Simple as pie. Put these tips to the test this year. You’ll never look back….
More Info: www.forbes.com
Categories: Money Matters