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Staying healthy isn’t only about how we eat, our exercise routines, or whether or not we’ve been exposed to a virus. Both personal and public health is also affected by the water we drink, the air we breathe, and the environments we live in—all of which are directly impacted by sustainability. Becoming mindful of your waste, adopting more eco-friendly practices, and supporting businesses that aim to protect the environment is about more than just saving the planet, it’s about saving the people who live on it, too.
Sound like a tall order?
Sustainability doesn’t have to be hard
Sure, there are big things that need tackling—like stopping deforestation, cutting back on emissions, and cleaning up the debris already scattered throughout our oceans—but that doesn’t mean there aren’t many very real ways you can make a difference.
As a private individual, there are numerous opportunities for you to help create a healthier, more sustainable planet. For instance, be mindful of spending your dollars on companies that share the same mission as you. Take a moment to look up how the product was made, what ingredients it contains, and how it can be disposed of when you are done. You might be surprised to find that even the smallest of items could be creating a big problem for the environment.
Sustainability and Oral Care
Take your toothbrush, for instance. It’s a tiny piece of plastic used to brush your teeth, a very important practice for good oral health. It may not seem like that big of a deal, but these short-term and unrecyclable instruments are left in landfills, creating 50 million pounds of waste each year and hundreds of years’ worth of toxins slowing being released in the air and into our lungs. Opting for a more sustainable toothbrush that is made out of naturally-abundant and biodegradable materials can help to keep both your smile white and our air clean.
Even your toothpaste could be leaving traces in unexpected places. Among many problematic ingredients, Triclosan, a chemical present in many traditional toothpastes to help fight germs, is ultimately ending up in our oceans. This is adversely affecting the development of marine life (including inducing hormonal changes) and bacteria that are necessary for maintaining the fragile balance of our eco-system. Finding a sustainable toothpaste that is free of fluoride, SLS, Peroxides, and Triclosan is not only better and safer for you, but is better and safer for the wellbeing of the planet, too.
In order to truly create a healthy society, we need to recognize how the influences of the world around us can have an impact on us—and how we can have an impact on the world by choosing more sustainable practices.