I've also decided to dedicate this post to discussing something I feel very passionate about: the Earth and the impact we have on it.
The health benefits of raspberries are something to get excited about. A member of the antioxidant-packed berry family, these ruby-hued flavour bombs are a true superfood.
- Beauty-promoting, with their high levels of collagen-building vitamin C; detoxifying fibre; array of wrinkle-reducing antioxidants, including vitamin E and resveratrol; and biotin and vitamin B5 for strong hair and nails
- Rich in vitamin C, a powerful immune booster, antioxidant and beauty nutrient
- High in fibre, for blood sugar stability, detoxification, a healthy digestive system, lowered LDL “bad” cholesterol and satiation
- Antioxidant-rich (containing anthocyanins, tannins, flavonols and more), helping to reverse oxidative damage caused by internal and external sources
- Hydrating, making them perfect to snack on during the warmer months, or after exercise (bonus points: they also provide electrolytes)
- Mineral-rich, containing manganese, copper, magnesium and potassium
- Contain a surprising amount of plant-based, anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids
- Folate-packed, making them a wonderful food for the ladies
In a past post, I mentioned picking wild raspberries at my cottage in northern Ontario when I was a child. This was one of my first connections (that I remember) with the natural world, without human interference. Sadly, those wild raspberry canes were cut to widen the road. It wasn't until nearly two decades (yikes!) later, that I became fully aware of the vast impact human actions have on the environment.
April also plays host to Earth Day, which is the perfect time to do something nice for the planet and all of the creatures on it -humans, cows, dogs, bears, frogs, salmon, elephants, etc. Every day we have a chance to be a little friendlier to the Earth. This doesn't mean hugging a tree, but you can if you like. Perhaps being kind to the Earth, and all lifeforms on it, means:
- Bringing reusable bags with you to the grocery store
- Supporting local producers
- Reducing your consumption of animal products (here is an overview of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization’s article about the environmental impact of eating animals/animal products)
- Trying to go vegan or vegetarian once a week (or every day!) -you can still have your cheesecake and eat it too
- Using vinegar and water instead of toxic chemicals to clean your home
- Going for joy rides on your bike, instead of in your car
- Sponsoring an animal
- Opening your mind up to new ideas or ways of thinking, without making fun of them or calling them weird/fringe
- Acknowledging that all viewpoints are valid (as long as it doesn't hurt or harm, of course) and that we're all entitled to speak, opine and debate
- The classic reducing, reusing and recycling of goods
- Not using pesticides on your lawn, because dandelions never hurt anyone, except your yellow-stained jeans
- Unplugging appliances when you're not using them
Being kind and "green," just takes a few simple, conscious decisions. That's it. No biggie. I don't know about you, but I'd like the Earth to stick around for a while longer (a long, long, long while longer, in fact).
A big thanks to Suzanne from the awesome blog, hello, veggy! for deeming April, "the month of change." It was a great starting point to stop and smell the roses, and embrace the wonderful new life and awe-inspiring natural events of spring.
How do you practice environmental kindness? Also, what's your go-to birthday dessert request?