• Fair Trade

    More and more people are promoting fair trade practices. This movement focuses on helping producers and workers in developing countries receive higher, fairer prices and helping improve working...

  • Organic Gardening

    Organic gardening is becoming more and more popular. People are becoming increasingly concerned about the quality of foods they eat, and are turning to organic foods with higher levels of nutrition...

  • Eco-building: Is it Possible?

    Many people have aspirations to make their home green, or energy efficient, carbon neutral or environmentally friendly. This is not always possible if you have an older house with restrictions such...

  • Items Made From Recycled Materials – Making the World A Better Place

    These days, communities are doing their part to make sure that what little resources are left on the planet can go as far as possible. Recycling is bigger than ever now, and for people who are...

  • View on Recycling

    Recycling refers to the act of changing materials that have been already in use and have been rendered useless, into new products. This is normally done to prevent waste of potentially valuable...

Eco-building: Is it Possible?

Many people have aspirations to make their home green, or energy efficient, carbon neutral or environmentally friendly. This is not always possible if you have an older house with restrictions such as Listed Building status. But if you are looking at building a new property, then there are a few options you can consider incorporating this.

Courses being taught as part of some online property development courses are now showcase some of these ideas, and they are the type of concepts which can be easily applied to any new build.

Insulation and Glazing

Insulation is relatively cheap to add while building a new property and is the best possible way of helping keep heating bills low. Some houses may have 125mm of wall insulation but to get a real energy efficient home, aim for 275-300mm thickness. There are even natural fibre options such as hemp, wood fibres or sheep wool or even something as basic as recycled newsprint.

Selecting the windows in your new house can be energy efficient in more than just the traditional way. Yes, using double glazing will help keep heat inside the house. But also thinking about the size of your windows can be significant. A big bay window may look spectacular but will surely loose heat and can actually make the house too hot at warmer times of the year, meaning you need air conditioning to bring the heat back down.

A new advance on double glazing is those which fill the gap between the two panes with a type of gas or use energy efficient glass known as Low-E (low emissivity). If a big window is an absolute must, then consider using solar shading such as brise soleil or solar control glass which is coated to absorb heat.

Installing water re-use systems

With the increasing demand for water with the changes to the climate, re-using water in various ways can be another system to put into place when building your new home. Rain water falling on the roof is an option and so is using water from showers, basins and baths which is called grey water.

Both of these types of water can be used in toilet flushing and in the garden, and grey water is reliably produced, even if rainfall can be a bit hit and miss. It is possible to cut down water use by around a third by using grey water.

Collecting rainwater can be done using a simple water butt or a rainwater harvesting system. Both can be incorporated into drainage systems and may even help alleviate floods, which is a very hot topic at the moment.

Renovations

You may not be able to look at building a new property, but other options are available.

Like buying an older house or period property that requires renovations where you can add value with an Eco-development. Alternatively picking up a below market value property or a property with a leasehold problem where you can add value, extend the lease and provide the eco renovation can be a great option.

Either way, just because your not focusing on new builds doesn’t mean there are no green measures which can be put in place, they may just have a slightly different approach.

Consider replacing insulation, upgrading windows and checking the age of heating systems to see if upgrading may save money and make the house more energy efficient.

Items Made From Recycled Materials – Making the World A Better Place

These days, communities are doing their part to make sure that what little resources are left on the planet can go as far as possible. Recycling is bigger than ever now, and for people who are serious about doing their part for the environment, and there are more products than ever that are made from recycled materials that are just as good as their non-recycled counterparts.

More Products Now Made From Recycled Material

Airbags turned into wallets and tote bags: When cars get wrecked they get towed to a junkyard, but certain parts of those twisted hunks of metal can actually be recycled. There are many companies that pop out the old airbags, assuming that they are undamaged or deployed, and turn those bags into wallets, purses, and tote bags. Airbags are made out of cloth that just fill with air and protect people from getting hurt, and there are tons of them in junk yards that are now finding new homes in a very fashionable way.

Cookware made from recycled aluminum: People who love to cook are always on the lookout for new pans that will last for a long time. For people who want to use recycled materials, a quick read of many cookware reviews will lead them to discover that there is such a thing as cookware that is made from recycled aluminium and stainless steel. The pots and pants made from recycled material work just as well as regular pots and pans, and if people want to know for sure, there are plenty of cookware reviews that will verify the strength and durability of recycled cookware. You can learn about these various cookware materials and more here.

Clothing made from coffee grounds: Some people who have their own gardens will often go to coffeehouses like Starbucks because they happen to take all of their coffee grounds, package them in plastic bags, and then give them away to gardeners. However, a company called Moving Comfort has found a way to turn coffee grounds into yard, and has created a line of clothing from them. There is no need to worry though, the clothing does not smell like coffee, but is naturally water repellant and can protect the wearer from the dangerous UV rays of the sun. Who knew that coffee could be a great thing to drink, and now, a great thing to wear as well?

Bowls made from old vinyl records: Vinyl is coming back in a big way. Now, these old records are back in style, but this time they are combing back as bowls. The company that makes this recycled bowls is called Vinylux, and they also make records into more than just kitchen items. Vinylux makes a number of different products from old vinyl records such as clocks, mirrors, and journal books.

Companies Are Finding More Ways to Make Products From Recycled Materials

Everyone is doing their part for the environment these days by recycling, but there are also other ways to be environmentally conscientious like buying products that are made from recycled materials, and there are plenty to choose from. Whether it is cookware or clothing, recycled material is finding its way into the lives of everyone on the planet.

View on Recycling

Recycling refers to the act of changing materials that have been already in use and have been rendered useless, into new products. This is normally done to prevent waste of potentially valuable materials. Recycling also helps to minimize the utilization of the available raw materials and reduce environmental pollution.

It is good to understand the materials that can be recycled and those that cannot be recycled. Some of the materials that can be reused include plastic materials, food materials, textiles, paper and glass. It is good to note that about 99.9% of the materials we use can be recycled.

Recycling actually should start with what we have and what we are using at home to enhance maximum utilization of the raw materials used to build your old appliances at home. For example the best steam irons you bought, or the home gyms for sale you purchased, these materials can be re-used somehow, or can be donated or even sold to recycling plants.

Recycling depends on different methods as dictated by the available materials. There are three major stages involved in the process of recycling. These include, collection and processing of the recyclable materials, manufacturing of the recyclable and selling and purchasing of the new products made from recyclables. During the process of collection, the recyclables are sorted and then sent to the recovery machines. The recovery machine will then send the sorted recyclables to the manufacturing unit. The manufacturing unit is involved to make the finished products out of the recyclables. The finished products can now be sent to the end users, say consumers.

Bearing in mind the importance of recycling, it is good to encourage everyone to recycle waste materials to help improve our environment. Pollution is one of the major factors that recycling was meant to solve.

There are three major types of pollution that can be solved by recycling. These include water pollution, soil pollution and air pollution. These three have different effects that can be fatal to human health. For instance, air pollution can cause degradation of the ozone layer. Degradation of the ozone layer can lead to global warming. This can cause out break of diseases such as cancer to human beings. Cancer is a fatal disease that causes death to human beings. Therefore, this problem can be solved by recycling gases released to the air such as sulphur (IV) oxide gas.

Water pollution is also dangerous to human health as well as aquatic animals and plants. Polluted water can cause death of aquatic animals while causeing ill health such as stomachache or death in humans. This problem can be avoided by recycling sewage materials as useful materials such as fertilizers to be used in agricultural purposes, instead of releasing the materials to the rivers. Soil pollution can cause problems such as soil erosion and loss of soil fertility. Turning applicable recycled materials into fertilizers can help solve this loss of soil fertility.

Recycling can also help solve the problem of water shortage by making maximum use of the available water. This is made possible by treating dirty water to be reused in doing other purposes like cleaning.

Personal Trainer Courses Contribute to Healthy and Sustainable Community Living, say UK Civic Engineers

There are a growing number of civic engineers in the United Kingdom who have come to the conclusion that building complexes and facilities for the teaching of personal trainer courses within local communities is the solution to getting Britain fitter and healthier and also tackling the UK’s growing childhood obesity crisis.

Many of these civic engineers have now banded together into a group that calls itself “The Brotherhood of the Scorpion”, and have set about building training facilities in some of the local communities across England, Wales and Scotland which are the worst affected in terms of poor health and childhood obesity.

The leader of this bunch, one Luigi Vampa, recently completed work on a training facility for Discovery Learning, one of the UK’s foremost providers of fitness courses. He designed and supervised the construction of the institution from which the Discovery personal trainer courses in Nottingham will be taught.

“We build most of these places for big fitness course providing companies like Discovery,” Luigi explained. “The brotherhood doesn’t have the money to sponsor them ourselves.”

Luigi went on to express his concerns about the state of public health in the community of Nottingham:

“Nottingham is very much in need of facilities to train and equip personal fitness coaches to go out and work with all the lazy people and fat children around here.”

“Centuries ago, Nottingham was home to the finest woodland archers in Christendom, men of strength, endurance and dexterity, from whom the legend of Robin Hood and his outlaw band arose. Nowadays I look around and I see bulbous children playing with their iPhones while shoveling crisps down their throats, and large groups of men queuing outside the local benefits office while drinking cheap beer.”

Discovery are one of a number of top UK fitness providers to take advantage of the public health situation in Nottingham and other cities in the North of England by setting up their training facilities and trying to attract business in the form of local people who want to develop skills and gain qualifications with which they can help their communities.

Another brotherhood member and Manchester based civic engineer and brotherhood member, Bertie Wooster, recently won an environmental award for his creative use of eco-friendly building materials in designing the Discovery UK Manchester personal trainer courses academy.

“I built the outside of Discovery’s academy out of straw”, said Bertie. “A lot of people laugh at anyone who tries to make buildings out of straw, but it’s actually really good because the building materials are cheaper. A lot of folks also mistakenly believe that straw buildings catch fire too easily, but in fact it’s the opposite. Walls made out of bales of straw are slower to burn than normal walls because the straw is so tightly packed together within the bales that there is no open space for a fire to consume oxygen from.”

Bertie’s eco-friendly training complex is current up and running and providing the local population of Manchester with a wide range of fitness training courses including yoga instructor, Pilates teacher, sports nutrition trainer, obesity and weight management expert, and standard gym instructor qualifications.

Save water without sacrifice

Cool and wet, water is vital to our existence. Three days without water and you’ll perish. But out water supplies around the world are even decreasing. Droughts and extreme weather can make traditional water supplies more unreliable both in quantity and water quality. With more and more people relying on the same sources we must do everything we can to conserve and save water.

Often when people talk about saving water it is a trade off between some creature comfort and water conservation. Maybe the water usage cost savings offsets the equation a little. However, most of our water bill each month is supply charges relating to infrastructure (pipes and sewers) rather than actual usage. Throw in the fact that most water supplies are subsidized by governments the dollars you actually save aren’t really anything to write home about. So trying to get the vast majority people to sacrifice comfort to save water can be hard.

One of the often-touted ways to save water is to have a shorter shower in the morning. Or install a water saving, low flow shower head, or do both. So in other words, give up your nice long, hot and strong shower to save a little water each day. Most people go “no, thanks” and buy bigger shower heads and remove flow restrictors so they can have a heavy shower. People feel they cannot rinse properly or it doesn’t feel “right”. Really you can rinse with very little water and the feel is just learned over time. But rather than educating a lot people (a slow and often futile exercise) there have been some good technological developments. These developments will let people have their water saving shower and their long, hot and strong shower. It’ll let them have their cake and eat it too.

Enter the modern water saving shower head. Instead of just simply restricting water flow and delivering a dribble, these shower heads aim to pressurize the water flow. Adding pressure and air to the shower stream makes the shower feel like it is using a lot more water than it actually is, which still allows you to have a great shower every morning. In this brilliant way, you no longer have to sacrifice comfort for conservation, it’s win-win.

There are many shapes and sizes of shower head all with different water usage. Check the gallons per minute flow rating to find the best water saving shower head. Some are ultra low flow and have a small shower head area which is ideal for low water pressure as well as saving water. Other heads are bigger for a more standard shower but still pump out the pressure. Pick up the shower head that is right for you and start saving today.

Another win-win water saving solution is the dual flush toilet. There are pretty much standard these days. Most people don’t give a dang about the toilet so long as it flushes everything. When building new or renovating the toilet or bathroom area you should install as many water efficient products as possible, including taps with aerators, low flow shower heads and dual flush toilets.

Good luck in your quest to save what is arguably our most precious resource. If we all pitch in we’ll have healthy, clean and clear water for generations to come.

Help Your Local Environment This Summer by Recycling and Reusing Your Pool Water

Water is a valuable resource and we should all try to avoid wasting it, not only to save money but to reduce our impact on the environment. As a civic engineer I understand that some areas of the world have no problems getting a steady supply of clean drinking water if they get regular rain throughout the year. For many areas however, even in first world countries, water shortages are a very serious problem.

Our farm takes several measures to ensure that we don’t waste drinking water, with a rain collection system for irrigation and cleaning purposes and a ground water bore hole for drinking water. However we do have a small above ground pool for the kids to use during the summer which I pay for a water tanker to fill up for about $100, which is a bargain considering how many hours of fun they have in it. For many people who also have an above ground pool at home they will likely drain the water at the end of each summer and not think twice about it.

Pool Water for Your Yard

This is probably the easiest way to make use of the water, however chlorinated pool water is not good for plants, it will need to be left untreated for a few weeks before you can start using it to irrigate your yard. Make sure that your pool pump and skimmer are turned off and the water will eventually go cloudy. At this point test the pH of the water, if it is around pH 7-8 then test a bucket full on an area of your yard, wait a few days and if the grass looks fine then you can use the water on your plants/lawn safely.

In-Ground Pools

Recycling your pool water is not quite so simple with an in-ground pool, as it can be damaging to the pool if you drain all the water. The weight of water in an average in-ground pool could be up to 100 tons, that is a lot of weight! So removing this weight can cause the sides of the pool to rise and crack in some cases damaging the pool beyond repair. It’s still possible to recycle the water in an in-ground pool and is normally done to re-balance the pH of the water and remove the build-up of minerals.

Salt Water Pools

One more thing to remember is don’t try to make use of your pool water for irrigation if it is a saltwater pool. This will be harmful to your plants and lawn, and as far as I’m aware there is no easy way to remove the salt from water, the only thing that will reduce the salinity is to dilute the water. If you still want to make use of your salt pool water then diluting it and getting it to around 2000ppm and under which is an acceptable level for irrigation. You will need to use a salt titrator test strip to make sure that the salinity falls within the acceptable levels.

Reclaimed Wood for Charm and Practicality

Are you looking for a way to renovate your home with eco-friendly materials?

If you are picturing water bottle lights hanging from the ceiling and walls made out of tires, you may be getting a bit uneasy. If you are into that great, but recycling materials for your home can be much easier than that and beautiful at the same time with reclaimed wood…

Using reclaimed wood is a fantastic way to help protect the planet while getting that home renovation up and going. Reclaimed wood comes from all types of building structures including barns and bridges. It is strong, plentiful, and flexible. Plus, there is just something exciting about recycling something old into something new, beautiful, and useful.

Sites with high visual content like Pinterest are swarming these days with ideas for using reclaimed wood, like barn doors, to bring charm to any room.

Repurpose Barn Doors

Barn doors can be seen covering the pantry, as an entry to the bedroom, or even on sliders to hide bookcases. The possibilities are seemingly endless.
Delightful Doors shows a variety of styles and ideas from the front door to a headboard.

Sliding barn doors save space, don’t slam or cause wall damage, and installation is easy too! With just the door and some special hardware, you can mount barn doors in places a swinging door just would not work.
They can give your home a unique detail that is sure to be the center of conversation with guests.

Wood Beams

Another fabulous way to give your home an eye-catching update is with repurposed wood beams. Adding wood beams to the ceiling can add depth and interest to an otherwise boring feature. Ceiling beams completely change the look and feel of a room, a great renovation.

Wood beams look stunning atop a fireplace, as well, providing a durable shelf for family photos and trinkets.

Tables, Dividers, and More

Repurposed wood can bring a fun, cool vintage feel to your décor. From unique tabletops to seating and storage chests repurposed wood invites you to relax and stay awhile. An old pallet turns into a coat hanger by the door or a rolling coffee table with storage.

Some more ideas for decorating with reclaimed wood…

  • Hinge old wood doors together for a great room divider
  • Create a personalized wall hanging with boards and stencils
  • Rustic wine or towel rack
  • Old pallet boards stacked against a wall for a unique accent
  • A distinctive staircase

Wood doors make great headboards for the bed or can even be redesigned into picture frames. If you need extra shelving, old doors are great for that and mirror frames, as well.

Aside from being durable, long lasting, and beautiful, reclaimed wood has unique grain and character that you just don’t get with boards fresh off the mill.

With a little work and a lot of creativity, there are boundless ways to use recycled wood to fill your home with a rich history and rustic cheerfulness.

Trends In Eco Friendly Air Conditioning

With the onset of warmer weather, homeowners across America turn on their air conditioners to escape the heat and humidity higher temperatures bring. According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), conventional AC units consume approximately five percent of the nation’s electricity.

With conventional AC units releasing around 140 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, consumers are searching for more eco-friendly air conditioners that promote sustainable living.

Even though thermodynamics is viewed as being a complete science in today’s society, manufacturers are continually coming up with new heat pump, air conditioning, and refrigerator designs.

Many factors contribute to the latest innovation trends in the air-conditioning and refrigeration (ACR) industry, including the:

  • Phasing out of high-GWP and high-ODP refrigerants
  • Utilization of eco-friendly refrigerants
  • Increase in energy-efficiency standards
  • Development of sustainable energy
  • Computer stimulation of system and component performance
  • Responsiveness to consumers’ needs and desires

Trends in Eco-friendly Air Conditioning

New government regulations are spurring manufacturers to phase out conventional air-conditioning products that contain ozone-depleting refrigerants and to make more environmentally friendly options for consumers across the nation. Homeowners who are focused on sustainable living should consider the following trends in eco-friendly ACR products.

Geothermal Heat Pumps

Designed to regulate temperature effectively, geothermal heat pumps utilize the earth’s temperature to heat and cool water. These systems are made up of outdoor and indoor units to transfer water in and out of the ground. This unit pumps water into the ground so that the soil can extract the excess heat and reduce the electricity needed to keep the home cool.

Ice Power Air Conditioners

Ice power AC units function with conventional AC units by producing ice at night when the demand for energy is low. During the day, these units utilize the “ice battery” to provide cool air and offset the systems’ energy usage.

Solar Air Conditioners

Solar air conditioners provide consumers with various environmental benefits, such as load shifting at peak usage, fewer power outages, reduced electricity costs, lower greenhouse gas emissions, and off-the-grid capabilities. Solar air conditioners are available in two designs – chillers and hybrids.

  • Chillers: Solar-powered absorption chillers heat and cool water through condensation and evaporation, cooling the air by blowing the water over water-saturated material. When plugged into conventional power sources, chillers operate at less than 500 watts an hour, compared to the 900 watts needed for conventional window AC units and 3,500 watts an hour for central air conditioning.
  • Hybrids: Hybrids combine direct current (DC) technology with photovoltaic (PV) technology, allowing for the automatic switching between battery and solar power when necessary. Air conditioners that are set in hybrid mode charge the battery power through sunlight, and on cloudy days, these AC units run on battery power while charging the batteries through an alternating current power. These units are able to work off the grid and as solar/battery AC units.

Energy Star Air Conditioners

Air conditioners with an Energy Star rating offer more efficient technology than conventional systems, reducing consumers’ energy costs by up to 50 percent. These systems offer an environmentally friendly option as well as rebate incentives and tax credits for installation.

Impacts on Sustainable Living

With a balanced ecosystem being essential to the survival of humans and animals, environmentally friendly air conditioning units are becoming a vital component to sustainable living. Consumers should not have to rely solely on pollution-generating power plants to cool their homes, and eco-friendly air conditioners utilize renewable energy for a positive contribution to the environment’s welfare.

Certain organizations are now paying close attention to sustainable AC designs, complying with social, ecological, and economical sustainability concepts. By applying these concepts to building more energy-efficient homes, especially where demand is greatest, consumers and HVAC technicians and others in the industry are minimizing their energy usage and having a positive impact on the environment.

As temperatures increase, the demand for air conditioning units also increases, especially with heat waves causing blackouts, health issues, and death. By reducing fossil fuel emissions and replacing these emissions with renewable resources, consumers are encouraging sustainable living practices, helping keep their homes cool without having a negative impact on the environment.

What Is Apple Doing For The Environment?

What Is Apple Doing For The Environment?

Hey guys.

Today while doing some research I started thinking about Apple and the environment. I figured that it was worthy of a new blog post.

Do you think Apple is doing enough for the environment? I always thought Apple with their various devices including the popular iPhone range were quite environmentally conscious however it doesn’t seem to be the case. Instead they have recently announced that their new iPhone will have a bigger carbon footprint when released. This doesn’t bode well for their green record and raised some interesting questions for myself.

There are lots of reasons why Apple’s carbon footprint is important to all of us.

Companies like Apple regularly waste a lot of energy and materials when making the iPhone and other related devices. In the weeks running up to the last iPhone release this was big news for environmentalists. Even though the new Apple iPhone features were a popular topic this was overshadowed by their continued waste of resources and materials. I personally think the Apple iPhone is a great device especially since I got mine jailbroken with a Google search for an iOS 7.1 jailbreak and I find that it is much more environmentally friendly as a result. However, saving on battery power doesn’t make up for how the device is actually made.

Tim Cook, current CEO of the company, did recently acknowledge that Apple needs to do more to please its environmental users. While the devices are very popular among many people their carbon footprint has come under attack in recent weeks and months. As far as I am concerned this is justified and as much as I like Apple products and the iPhone in particular I am worried about their environmental direction.

They recently said that the new iPhone 6, whenever it is released, will have a higher carbon footprint than the current iPhone generation. This should worry many people who are concerned about Apple and their commitment to environmental issues. It doesn’t seem as if Apple’s current strategy is working very well and I would definitely like to see better materials used when constructing the iPhone range of devices.

I think I made a post last year praising Apple for appointing Lisa Jackson, the former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator, to the company. I’m sure she has helped to create some effective green policies for the company but I would ask Apple themselves to try and cut down on their material waste.

So this is what I wanted this post update to be about today: are Apple doing enough for the environment?

It is a question that you should ask yourself and other people.

I am not advocating a boycott of Apple products like the iPhone or the iPad but rather this is to raise awareness about Apple’s environmental waste. I hold out hope, as do many people who use the Apple iPhone, that they will improve their environmental record. This is not likely to start with the new Apple iPhone or any of the new Apple devices that are being released in the coming weeks and months but hopefully in the near future Apple will see the error of their ways.

Urban Garden Mortgage

Urban Garden Mortgage

One of my friends recently applied for a mortgage with his bank. He was looking for some extra funds to increase the size of his conservatory, by replacing it with a new one. One of the questions on the mortgage form asked about “agricultural ties” Now my friend is a keen urban gardener and has a nice little vegetable and herb plot in his garden. It is not a huge garden by any means, but he loves it and I can vouch for his carrots! The question about agricultural ties confused him slightly and he told the mortgage adviser, his property did have agriculture of sort i.e. his vegetable plot.

As soon as he mentioned this, the adviser seemed to get very concerned. This of course in turn concerned my friend; surely his lender would have no problem with a few spuds and carrots? The adviser said he would need to speak to his manager and got up and left my friend sitting there worried out of his head!

The mortgage adviser returned and told my friend they would need to decline his application as the bank did not lend to farms! My friend was astonished to hear these words, he didn’t have a farm, and he lived in a ex-council estate in East London! My friend immediately asked to see the manager, and after a few minutes the Manager came over. He explained that the banks policy was not to lend to property with significant “agricultural ties” My friend asked what the definition of significant was. The bank manager said that any property with a large proportion of its land used for farm production of crops.

By now was friend had gone from being worried to being outraged. Crops, farms what on earth did this bank think he was doing? Did they think he was selling his prize carrots to the whole of east London? No amount of explaining, that the small plot of vegetables at the bottom of his garden was for his own use, made any difference. My friend simply gave up and left the branch.

He explained his woes to me and was still visibly upset when I saw him. I calmed him down and explained that he could speak to my mortgage broker who was based in Glasgow, but would be more than happy to discuss my friend’s options. Although my broker was based in Glasgow, he has clients in London and can arrange everything by phone. He took my advice and spoke to my broker. The Glasgow mortgage broker was able to advise my client that there were plenty of lenders that would consider a re-mortgage application, even with his vegetable plot. The beauty of using a mortgage broker, is that they can access the whole market and work on your behalf not the banks( which can only be a good thing)

My friend was able to get a suitable mortgage and now has a beautiful new conservatory. If you need to find a suitable mortgage and need some sound advice, then I would have no problem recommending Mortgage Advisor Glasgow, you can find out more about them on their website here.

 

Organic Foods for A Better Health & Sustainable Lifestyle

 

Although there are many factors that go into maintaining an environmentally conscious, sustainable lifestyle, it’s important to never forget how important a good, healthy diet is as well. Making it a point to support local businesses and – of course – eat wholesome, organic foods is more than just a big part of living sustainably. It’s also an important part of maintaining optimal good health.

Many of today’s top nutritionists and medical experts wholeheartedly believe that adding the right organic produce to your daily regimen can not only help you prevent disease, but also treat existing ailments you may already be suffering from. My health issues related to Kidney Pain makes this post a lot more personal and I have been looking into much deeper cause for these health issues. What I firmly believe now is that there are no better alternative to having organic food if you would like to maintain good health.

I will write a much in depth post on organic food and how it impacts your health in the later posts.  But for now, lets keep this simple. Let’s just take a closer look at some of the top organic foods health authorities say you should be including in your diet and why.

Beans

Beans are more than one of the most economically conscious foods you can buy. They’re also high in a whole symphony of important nutrients. If you’re into sustainable home gardening, it’s easy to grow them yourself as well. Beans promote optimal bone, prostate, and muscle health. They can also help to treat symptoms associated with menopause. Their high protein content also makes them an easy swap-out for just about any meat in recipes you’d like to try to boot. Last but definitely not least, the high fiber content in beans helps to keep your entire digestive tract in good working order, making them an essential for everyone.

Garlic and Onions

Organic garlic and onions are more than just delicious, all-natural ways to add flavor to just about any dish. They’re also incredible health tonics in their own right. Garlic contains more than 70 phytochemicals that are thought to lower blood pressure. It is also prized for helping to lower your risks of developing cancers of the rectum, ovary, and more. Onions on the other hand are ideal for helping to prevent blood clots and keep your circulatory system on the whole super healthy.

Celery

Celery is prized by nutritionists for its ability to treat a variety of different ailments. These include chronic kidney issues like kidney stones. That said, if you have issues with your kidneys and your kidney pain location suggests that stones may be a problem for you, then you might want to try adding some organic celery to your diet in addition to following doctor’s orders. Celery is packed with vitamins and nutrients that help boost the immune system and ward off colds or the flu to boot. Most doctors recommend eating at least four stalks a day.

Citrus Fruit

Organic citrus fruits are among the most healthful fruits you can add to your diet. Not only are they chock full of Vitamin C, the nutrient responsible for maintaining your immune system, as well as the overall structural strength of many body tissues. Many varieties – such as grapefruit – are high in lycopene, a compound that has been linked to lowered cancer risks. The rinds are full of goodies as well. Use the zest to add pizzazz to favorite recipes and even drinks.

Toxin In Your Toothpaste

It never ceases to amaze me that being environmentally friendly as I am, it’s not simply a case of doing the more obvious things to maintain my green credentials. Yes I recycle where I can, try to use public transport, and when I can’t, drive an economical car and so on. You get the idea.

No being green even reaches into my bathroom and brushing my teeth! I read here that the toothpaste I use contains fluoride – and most of them do. I thought that was a good thing, helps your teeth from rotting, so the marketers love to keep telling us. And it does, but what I didn’t realise is that fluoride is more toxic that lead! Now that’s a worry for anyone, let alone someone as eco-friendly as me.

However, the evidence as to whether the amount of fluoride contained in toothpaste is enough to be harmful seems to be inconclusive. As long as you don’t swallow your toothpaste, there seems to be more benefits than drawbacks. That’s fine, but I have two young children, and they DO swallow the toothpaste. And while the manufacturers continue to market fluoride toothpastes in bubble-gum, fruit, and sweet-like flavours, who can blame them for thinking their toothpaste is not to be eaten. Young children also have poorly developed swallowing reflexes, and invariably swallow large amounts without thinking about it.

Fluoride toothpastes sold in the UK generally contain between 1,100 and 1,450 parts per million (ppm) fluoride (the equivalent of over 1 mg of fluoride for each gram of paste). Although I have noted that since reading this, upon checking my children’s toothpaste, the fluoride levels are lower, I guess to take into account the likelihood of their swallowing the toothpaste.

It seems that the bottom line is that fluoride is a poison that helps to kill off all the bacteria in your mouth when you brush your teeth, both the beneficial bacteria and the harmful ones that promote tooth decay. However, there’s no good reason to ever ingest fluoride, as it’s just inviting your kidneys to be over-worked by processing this toxin.

So yes, I am worried for me and my children’s health here. Not to mention of course that the fluoride we do remember to spit out will go down the plughole and into our water system. However there are alternatives , in other words, fluoride-free toothpastes, and from what I understand, these are credible alternatives that actually work.

As to which toothpaste to purchase? Fluoride or fluoride-free, well for me that’s an easy answer. For you, that’s your own decision, but at least we may know which questions to ask, and at least at this point, there are many non-fluoride toothpastes available, so have a look and give them a go. You may surprise yourself and find a fluoride-free toothpaste that not only does the job of helping your teeth from rotting, but also give you the satisfaction of knowing, you have done away with fluoride, and that has to be worth it.