Making the decision to go organic is a big one, and we applaud you for that! There is something exciting and daunting about going through this process, but we are here to let you know that you are not going to go through it alone! We have compiled a list of tips and suggestions that we hope will be helpful during this transition, enjoy!
Step One: Decide you are going organic. Step Two….where do you even start? I personally have a horrible tendency to assume that the second I decide to make a major change in my life, I impulsively start without thinking about the logistics or difficulties along the way (this has led to some pretty questionable haircuts). So, what happens after you decide to go organic? Well we suggest starting the journey by taking baby steps.
Rather than spending lots of money, and wasting lots of food, switching everything in your pantry and refrigerator immediately, start swapping out items as they need to be replaced. Out of eggs? Buy free range organic eggs instead of your usual purchase. Need more snacks for the kids? Do some research to find organic replacements that will make everything happy! This philosophy can also go for cleaning supplies and cosmetic products, just replace as needed!
Now, we know that this sounds a bit tedious (especially if you’re a mama grocery shopping with your children) but here’s the truth: if you can’t pronounce an ingredient, it’s likely to be a preservative/additive or another nasty ingredient that our bodies should not be consuming. If you are curious, take some time to do a quick internet search. That will not only provide knowledge, but also peace of mind.
Here at Mama Jess, we often rely on the EWG, or Environmental Working Group, website to help us understand what these additives and preservatives are. They have even compiled a list of the “Dirty Dozen” which are 12 additives that you can find in everyday food that you should try to avoid since they have been linked to serious health issues such as endocrine disruption and in some cases, cancer. Click here to read more!
Whether this means a local farmers market or grocery store, buying more local produce allows you to have more fresh finds. Another great thing, specifically about farmers markets, is that you can talk to the farmers themselves, who are usually the vendors at their own booths. This way, you can get an even further form of education about where your food comes from.
The EWG (see, we told you we really love this site!) also has a list of the produce items that tend to contain the highest amount of pesticides, if they are not grown organically. Click here to read the list, it will really get you thinking about what you are putting into your body.
The best way to know where food comes from? Growing it in your own garden! That being said, some of us don’t have the time or space to grow an entire salad’s worth of veggies. But why not try out your green thumb on a couple of herbs or a tomato plant on your apartment balcony? These are some of the baby steps that we talked about earlier! Not to mention there is such pride in eating food that you took time and energy to grow!
Living an organic lifestyle is living a healthy lifestyle, but you are only halfway there if you aren’t in a positive spot mentally. Take some time for yourself each day doing something you love, whether that is reading, jogging, writing in a journal, or even gardening. Consider meditation to clear your head from time to time and squeeze in some fresh air during even during the busiest day in the office. These actions will be so worth it in the long run!
Going organic can be quite a process, but don’t get discouraged or overwhelmed! This shouldn’t be a punishment, or something that weighs on you constantly. Instead, think of it as something that lightens you and puts you in a good mood. We believe in you!