WASHINGTON: An US dietician says that has branded Americans food habits an "SUV eating style", which contributes to global warming more than the
cars they drive, in her book.
Kate Geagan, registered dietitian in Park City, Utah, refers to a University of Iowa study that has found that food on average travels about 1,500 miles to reach people's tables.
"When we choose highly processed packaged foods, we contribute to global warming, so food is a new part of the dialogue about the environment. And this is something that everyone can do now and not wait for politicians to enact changes. An added bonus is that eating green saves green and what consumer doesn't want to save money on food?" the Environmental News Newwork quoted her as saying, while explaining how changing one's diet can impact the environment.
Kate, whose book 'Go Green Get Lean: Trim Your Waistline With the Ultimate Low-Carbon Footprint Diet' will be published in March, also says that there is a difference between eating green and being a vegetarian.
"Only about 3 percent of the U.S. population identifies themselves as vegetarians, so that is not doable for most people. But what is doable is choosing local or regional foods to reduce our carbon footprint. This isn't just about eliminating meat or eating only organic foods. If your organic smoothie is shipped by air and freight halfway around the world, then it isn't healthy for the environment. Eating green strikes a balance between cost, health and the planet -- a win-win for everyone," she said.
Kate also revealed her top three tips for consumers to go green.
"Eat more plants and cut down on beef and dairy. You don't have to give up beef or dairy, but by eating meatless one day a week you can improve the environment and do something good for your health," she said.
"Eat less food product and eat more food. Highly processed packaged foods consume valuable resources and they are usually not very healthful.
"Rethink your drink. Bottled beverages are heavy to ship. Consider drinking tap water instead of bottled water and rethink the diet soft drinks. Did you know it takes 2,200 fossil fuel calories to produce a one-calorie diet drink?" she added.