How What You Eat Affects the Environment

SaladFood is a part of everyone’s lives — and it affects many different things, including your individual health, the health of the environment, and the health of animals. If you want to see how your diet scores on these three factors, click here. The considerations that go into each score include:

Health: saturated fat, cholesterol, dietary fiber, calcium, vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, correlations of foods with cancer, and heart disease

Environment: air and water pollution from manure, cattle belching, production and overuse of fertilizer, depletion of groundwater, unnecessary use of land to produce feed grains and soil erosion, and over-grazing

Animal welfare: castration, hot-iron branding, debeaking, detailing, cramped cages and feedlots, cattle feed high in grain, and inhumane shipping and slaughterhouse practices

Also on the Center for Science in the Public Interest’s site is the Eating Green Calculator, which is a more simplified look at what you eat each week. It gives you stats on what it takes to fuel your diet — like how many acres of grain and grass are needed for animal feed, the pounds of pesticides and fertilizer used, and the amount of manure created by animals you eat.


2 thoughts on “How What You Eat Affects the Environment

  1. I like that your break down is straight to the point; health, environment, and animal welfare. A lot of people think that the food they eat will only affect themselves, but there is so much more going on. The environment and the health of it is definitely something that people take for granted. Fertilizer’s are being used on almost any grown product that can be bought at a store, and this does cause health risks. Also, animal welfare is a big thing that is also overlooked in my opinion. CAFO’s and big industry’s aren’t taking into consideration the inhumane acts.

    A website that I’ve used to monitor my health is Ask the Dietitian which breaks down a more in depth calculator of how to stay healthy.

    Great article and good information!

    • Those are great points — people can be very disconnected from where their food comes from and what impact it has on not only them, but the environment.

      We’ll check out the Ask the Dietitian site. Thanks for the recommendation!

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