20 January, 2008

new year's resolutions

No, I'm really not a couple of weeks behind, I normally don't make new year's resolutions, but this year we want to make a change to our lives and really wanted a marking point.

This year my family is going to try to sort of go green. I say sort of because even though it is important, it is not really about the environment. It's really more about us and our health. And let's face it going completely green would just not happen for us. I want to do a lot of research and make sure that I'm making the most informed decision I can. There is a lot of conflicting information out there and the decisions we are making are what we determine are best for our family. And there are only so many hours in the day. It also has to allow us to live a normal life without spending every waking hour sorting through garbage or whatever.

Last fall we started using environmentally conscious cleaning products. A small step, albeit important. Now, we are taking a year to see where we can go in terms of not polluting our bodies. Using environmentally friendly cleaning products was not so much for the environment, but to reduce the amount of chemicals that we are exposed to in our home.

We've also started eating more organic fruits, vegetables and grains, cutting down and hoping to eliminate processed foods and chemicals from our diets, paying attention to labels. I've started incorporating vegetable and fruit purees into almost everything we eat. For breakfast we eat blueberry oatmeal breakfast bars (from Deceptively Delicous) that have a mixture of blueberries and spinach puree. You can't even taste the spinach. My son devours it for breakfast every morning.

Are we going to go completely green? I think that is not realistic for us. But we will be making more informed decisions. I am going to try to use cosmetics that don't have so many chemicals, buy more organic cotton clothes (but going completely green on this one would be a serious challenge for me unless cashmere is considered organic), taking less medications.

About a year ago I started going to acupuncture on a regular basis. I can't tell you what a change it has made to my health and general feeling of well being. Several months ago I pulled a muscle in my neck. I've never had this kind of pain. I couldn't move, sit up unless it was so straight as to be unnatural, there was pain running down my arm and a couple of my fingers were numb. The husband was telling me I had to go to the doctor, but I didn't want to. I didn't want someone to look at me and give me a painkiller and tell me to come back in a week or two if it didn't get better.

I am no longer blindly taking medications because someone tells me to. After a few more days of not being able to function, the husband said, why don't you go for acupuncture? Why didn't I? I phoned up James at Sinocare where I go for acupuncture and he said, of course we can help you come in right away.

At my first appointment they had to help me on the table and I couldn't even put my back flat I was in such pain. One hour later I got up off the table by myself and walked out pain free. I had one more treatment that week, 2 more the week after and 1after that. NO MEDICATIONS!!

I'm not saying that there isn't a place for western medicine. There is, but there are other alternatives for certain things. It is a personal choice.

Anyway, over the next year I will be writing every now and then about our quest to live a greener, healthier life.


Kallia said...

Going green can be a difficult thing to do. I've been looking into it as well. I'd like to recommend www.localharvest.org to find local farms in your area who sell more organic products. I've also been reading Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan which offers great insight into different methods of food production from industrial to organic to hunter gatherer. It's quite a lot of food for thought (pun intended).

Mandi said...

Good for you! I've slowly but surely been going green with my family. Buying natural cleaners, getting more organic foods, recycling more... It's hard to kick old habits, but it feels SO good knowing I'm doing my family and our earth good. Ooh, and my brother got me the Deceptively Delicious book for Christmas and I'm anxious to finally try it out! Glad to hear you're having success with it!