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Waste-Free Living

Written by Jaiden Lahey - @nourished.by.j

Tips to be more proactive about waste! 

‘Waste-free’, it is a term that is being thrown around left, right and centre at the moment – all for the good reasons though! Now the big question is, what does it really mean? Because we talk about it and preach it like there is no tomorrow, but I tend to still come across people that don’t actually understand the concept. Basically, the world is being overrun by plastic and products that cannot physically be broken down without releasing toxic chemicals into the atmosphere…So obviously, this needs to stop! We need to move out of that mind-set of single-use products to more reusable and sustainable ideologies. That is where being waste-free comes in, a way to reduce our utilisation of these toxic products to a more eco-friendly, biodegradable way of living.

In a perfect world, being completely waste-free would be the most ideal situation. Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world and I just don’t see our world in that mind set just yet. Yes, we are moving in that direction, the word is getting out there and it’s getting people talking but are we doing enough? Are YOU doing enough? Our lives for so long were driven by convenience; a single-use plastic revolution… and now we’re paying for it, through the plastic filled oceans, destroyed habitats, death of animals due to consumption of micro-plastics and so much more. You only need to walk down the street or go to the beach to find tiny pieces of rubbish scattered around. It is a disturbing sight and unfortunately, incredibly difficult to reverse, we literally need everyone to participate in this fight against waste!

 

Okay, let me guess, you agree with the concept, but you are also wondering HOW do you contribute to this fight?! Easy – Be aware and make changes where you can; you do not have to do this perfectly (unless you want to then by all means, give it your best shot!) but if you just want to make small but significant changes then here are some tips to help you start:

 

E D U C A T I O N

Education is key, understanding why you’re doing what you’re doing will help you develop a reason and/or a passion for reducing your waste. There are so many articles, documentaries, books etc’ on this topic, get into it!

 

Buying produce not wrapped in plastic –

when you go to the supermarket, try to avoid getting pre-cut, wrapped fresh produce; I always try to buy whole pumpkins, cabbages etc purely to avoid them being wrapped. Obviously, there are some difficulties in this area as products are very much plastic packaged but just do your best! Or support your local fresh produce markets buy fresh and local! 

Extra tip: use mushroom bags for loose produce if you don’t have reusable produce bags!

Make the little swaps for major impacts –

reusables will become your best friend: coffee cups, water bottles, straws, shopping bags, cutlery, toothbrushes, razors etc. There are multiple options, and they are 100x cuter than disposables

- Store your cut fruits and vegetables in containers rather than using plastic wrap or better yet, buy products that keep them fresh!

Buy essentials in bulk – Why?

Less packaging and cheaper in the long run! Take any old containers or reuse your empty jars at your local bulk store. You can buy exactly what you need so that's an extra win with no wastage. And think about the #pantrygoals

- Swap your body washes for soap bars. Shampoo and conditioner bars are also really good. There are so many brands out there so you will always find something that's perfect for you hair. They also contain less nasty chemicals so they are great for the environment and your body.

There are honestly endless ways you can reduce the amount of waste you leave behind – I’m not saying you need to do them all but by being aware and making conscious decisions to utilise other options is key. By living by example your actions can create discussions and trigger ideas onto another; even if only one other person starts to be more aware then that is one extra person in the fight!

I really do hope one day we are at a point where single-use plastics are in the past! Until then though, I feel we need to step up and sacrifice the convenience of these plastics for the health of our planet because after all, there is no planet B; we have to do better and I hope this helps you understand why and a little bit of how.

Hope your day is as wonderful as you,

J