‘The key is to live simply.’- Ed Begley, Jr
1) Choose genuine organic products
When shopping for organic products, look for the label ‘certified organic’ with the certifiers’ logos. Watch out for misleading labelling such as ‘organics’, ‘natural’ and ‘organically produced’ without any evidence of certification.
2) Research supply sources
Locate a good local health food, wholefood or organic shop. Supermarkets have also increased their lines of organic products. Look for websites and delivery services that sell and deliver organic products. You can also try the local farmers’ markets, box schemes or co-operatives. If the local farmers cannot provide organic certification, they can usually tell you how the produce was grown.
3) Take small steps
Some people find the prospect of going completely organic overwhelming and too expensive. Living organically does not imply a whole scale lifestyle change. Take things slowly. Consider introducing organic products one at a time. Replace the conventional products one by one with the healthier alternatives. Work out what you can afford, based on the foods you eat most frequently. Make fruit, vegetables, milk, grain, meat and baby food your first priority.
4) Find ways to save money
Review your overall food bill and identify areas where you can cut costs and redirect those savings to buy organic food products. Cutting down the amount of pre-packaged meals and unhealthy snacks and junk foods will save you money. Eating more vegetable protein and local seasonal produce will cut down the cost too. Buy organic cereals, grains, nuts and seeds loose and in bulk.
5) Choose a natural way of living
If you are unable to source genuine organic products, choose products that are as natural as possible. However, it’s important to realise that in todays’ market, the term ‘natural’ does not carry the same meaning that we are all familiar with. Watch out for those companies that deceptively market their products as being ‘natural’ when in most cases they are far from natural in the true sense.
6) Choose natural fabrics
Replace fabrics with certified organic cotton or hemp as they come up for renewal. Beware of many so-called ‘natural’ fabrics that have been processed using a myriad of toxic chemicals. Some of these fabrics are derived from plants grown with pesticides and extracted using processes that have negative impact on our environment.
7) Choose a chemical-free home
Educate yourself on the dangers of the chemicals found commonly in many products you use. Consider the cleaning products in your cupboard and decide what you really need. Do the same with your personal hygiene, toiletries, body care and cosmetics. Choose those without harmful synthetic chemical ingredients and experiment with natural alternatives.
8.) Grow an organic garden
Start a compost heap. It offers a great way to reduce and recycle waste and a natural means to fertilise your garden. Use organic seeds, natural pest control and fertilisers.
9) Spread the news
Share your positive benefits of an organic lifestyle with your family and friends. This will encourage more people to adopt the organic lifestyle and increase the demand for organic food and products. Increased demand will help our organic farmers and make organic products more affordable for all.
10) Watch out for pitfalls
The unhealthy organic product movement is on the rise as manufacturers jump on to the organic bandwagon. It is possible to have an unhealthy organic diet based on refined foods which lack the essential vitamins and nutrients. The basis of health is the same, whether you choose organic or not. An organic diet is only healthy if it contains all the elements of a healthy, balanced diet.
More information on this topic can be found in Chapter 3 of the ‘Go Natural’ Book.
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