Healthy Living

Have an Eco-Friendly Kitchen

You can make almost any room in your house more ecologically responsible if you make a little effort to do so. One area where you can have a significant impact in this regard is the kitchen. There are a lot of opportunities on several different levels in this room to do things in ways that help take care of the planet. You can move to more ecologically sound ways of doing things in terms of materials, energy use, and foods used. The following are some suggestions for making your kitchen more ecologically sound if it is not already:

Use Energy Efficient Kitchen Appliances

Saving energy helps the plant because it has the cumulative effect of cutting down on the use of fossil fuels. It also saves the consumer money, and that money can be spent in alternative ways that aren’t loading the big energy companies up with cash. There are a variety of appliances specifically designed to save money on energy consumption. Everything from toasters to oven and refrigerators can be found that have this characteristic. They are often designated as Energy Star appliances and will have the Energy Star logo printed somewhere on them.

Natural Cleaners

Kitchens need continual cleaning. When it’s time to clean the kitchen, you can use cleaners that use all natural ingredients. There are many detergents, soaps, and general cleansers on the market that can be used. You can even create your own. For instance, you can mix tea tree oil, lemon oil, and peroxide to create an excellent kitchen cleaning spray. Make sure to follow some directions to do this and get the right proportions.

Energy Efficient Lighting

There are Energy Star light bulbs as well. They can be used in the kitchen to make it that much more energy efficient and green. They can be used in overhead lights, lamps on kitchen tables and counters, and even in stove vent hoods. Combined with the efficient appliances, this can add up to a lot of savings in the room.

Local and Organic Meat, Dairy, and Produce

Try to buy your food materials locally since this encourages independent farming. But you also want to try to buy organically grown or responsibly raised food if possible. Buy meat that has not been factory farmed, produce grown organically (i.e. without pesticides), and dairy from free range cattle that have not been given rBGH (genetically engineered bovine growth hormone). This will be healthier, support local and responsible producers and take business away from large factory farms that are mainly profit driven. It is often possible to find both local and responsible producers.

Green Remodeling

One other area where you can use ecologically responsible principles with regard to your kitchen is when you do repairs and remodeling. There are many green materials that you can use to repair or remodel your kitchen. For instance, you could replace an old and worn out laminate counter top with one that was made with wood from lumber mills that are approved by the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC). You could also used recycled wood, metal, or other materials when remodeling your kitchen.

In summary, do things on the energy conservation, food production/consumption, and materials levels in your kitchen to make it ecologically more responsible. The more ways that you employ ecological principles in your kitchen as well as elsewhere in your home, the more it can help the environment. Join this growing trend and make your kitchen an example of the integration of green living into daily life that others can follow. Your eco friendly kitchen can represent not only an achievement on your part but an ideal for others as well.

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Karla Urwitz
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