This month during our Give Strong theme, we encourage everyone to give strongly this year on April 22nd, by taking part in doing something meaningful for our planet. Here are five ways where you can make a difference this Earth Day.

Reduce Your Intake of Meat

This may sound extreme to the avid carnivores. We all know how much a sizzling steak can tantalize our taste buds. But the next time you consume meat, whether it’s beef, poultry, lamb or pork – just consider this:

• Animal agriculture emits more carbon dioxide than the entire transportation sector combined
• It takes 2,500 gallons of water to produce just one pound of beef
• At least 50% of the food grown worldwide is used to feed livestock
These are just a few of the many disturbing facts about the reality of our consumption habits. If you truly want to give strongly this year, try to reduce or eliminate your intake of meat. The impacts each individual can make are colossal.

Use Reusable Bags

We all know about how destructive those plastic bags that we use so often can be towards our environment, and how easily they end up in our oceans. So the next time you go shopping, opt for a reusable canvas bag instead. Stash a few at work, or in your car so that you’ll be prepared for any impromptu shopping.

Reduce Your Waste

The next time you plan your grocery shop or any impromptu purchasing, try to select items that have minimal packaging or better yet – none at all. You can do this by purchasing items in bulk, or look for packaging that allows you to recycle or compost it. This will help alleviate the massive amount of waste that ends up in our landfills each year.

Use Eco-Friendly Products

Thankfully, with the products that are available today, it’s quite easy and affordable to select eco-friendly products. This means household cleaners, dish soap, laundry detergent, and even body care products. The next time you’re browsing the aisles at your local store, look for all-natural products – your body and the environment will thank you.

Compost Your Food Scraps

Almost half of the food we purchase ends up being thrown away. And each time it’s thrown in the trash, that food ends up in our landfills. Instead of throwing your produce and food scraps in the garbage, place a container or bin where you can compost it. There’s no excuse especially if you live in a city like Brampton or Mississauga with a green bin program. You can call your municipal info centre to see how and where to get a bin and what exactly you should put in it. This will also help to avert mass amounts of food waste that can be put to much better use than simply rotting in a landfill.

Earth Day is one day out of the year that shines a light upon the burdens we are continuing to place upon our planet. It also allows us to focus on altering some of those negative habits into something positive for our environment. At the Academy of Martial Arts we encourage each and every one of our students to give strongly to our Earth by doing something impactful, long-lasting, and truly meaningful for future generations.