This 10-week sustainability training focuses on changes that are easy to implement into everyday life. They neither require a lot of time or other investments.
At the same time, you will help the environment. This is the 6th challenge.
I stopped eating meat many years ago. There are several reasons to reduce meat consumption or switch to a vegetarian, vegan, or pescatarian lifestyle.
As part of our sustainability challenge, we will only look at the impact of meat consumption on our environment.
Meat is a polarizing topic: for a lot of people, it's easy to eat less. Because they don't like it. Or because they are grossed out by meat from factory farming. Others believe that a meal without meat is not a real meal. For them, this challenge might feel like a real sacrifice.
This week is not going to be easy for meat lovers. But keep in mind: if everyone would cut their meat consumption in half, we could literally save the world.
And you don't have to skip meat completely.
Eat meat but only on two days of the week. Obviously organic meat. To make this work, it's best if you plan your meals in advance and decide which meat dishes you want to eat.
Also, consider a few meatless alternatives, for instance, Hummus, Falafel, Curry, stir fry, pasta ... Planning in advance will help you to see the challenge through.
You will find a ton of fabulous cookbooks on Amazon.com. Why not try something new and learn a healthy style of cooking? Perhaps you always wanted to learn how to cook Indian dishes?
Vegetarianism has its roots in the civilizations of ancient India and you will find a lot of healthy, satisfying meatless options.
Unless you buy only organic meat, meat consumption is a serious threat to your health. I promised not to go there, I figure I break my promise a little bit. I'm sure you've heard the saying: "you are what you eat". In factory farming, animals live unhappy unhealthy lives. Okay, I will just stop here.
Fun fact (or not so funny): I once was in trouble for freeing animals. Also, I got tear gas in my eyes at a peaceful animal rights demonstration. With 13, someone went to my mom to complain that I was "begging". My mom was a working mom and had no idea what I was up to and that I was fundraising for an animal welfare organization.
From the age of 13 until I left Germany I was active in animal welfare and animal rights. I make it my challenge for this week to find an organization in the US to support. Currently, I only protect my 20 times bigger rabbit from my Russian Dwarf Hamster. He's fierce.
The fact of the matter is, meat from factory farming contains tons of antibiotics and other toxins. Your health will love you for reducing your meat consumption.
The amounts of meat we are eating are out of control. Back in the days, men went out and hunted one animal. A healthy animal that potentially had a good life. It fed the family for days or even two weeks.
That is a different story than eating pounds of meat from tortured, sick animals (sorry ... I did again).
Repeat the challenge of week one. Buy seasonal and regional.
Eat less seafood. Fish is healthy, but from an ecologic point of view, it makes sense to reduce your seafood consumption to twice a week. You can find the best eco-friendly choices in this guide HERE.
Even if you just reduce your meat consumption a little bit, you help the environment big time.
You can find a PETA article that quantifies the impact on water consumption, land etc in detail: ARTICLE
My apologies for using drastic language. I do not mean to scholar anyone or resort to emotional blackmail - how we (mis)treat animals is an emotionally painful topic for me.
The first challenges: