Why is green the new healthy?
Notions of health pop up all over food and drink labels. Terms like ‘low-fat’, ‘all natural’ and ‘low-carb’ show up on most food packaging. While eating right and staying fit has always been important, the newest healthy eating fads hardly address all of the key environmental health concerns.
Eating the right foods and getting exercise is one way to help prevent disease. Though environmental health is a huge concern, most people probably don’t understand the links between the environment in which we live and our health and the role that doctors can take in making the links between our environment and their patients’ health. It’s impossible to be healthy if we live in an unhealthy society, and doctors should take the lead in promoting healthier environments.
So what is environmental health? It’s the essence of the food you eat, the air you breathe and the water you drink. As we guzzle more and more fossil fuels and increase the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, not only are we warming the planet, but we are changing agriculture, polluting air and melting fresh bodies of water. As we try to become a healthier society by consuming the right foods and becoming more active, we are leaving out a key player in the “healthy” game. While eating right is a great start, promoting environmental health is also an essential component of health. Eliminating environmental toxins such as lead and mercury and reducing carbon emissions to minimize climate change are as important for human health as a good diet and exercise plan.
Fortunately, making our environmental healthier is not a futuristic endeavor. Medical practitioners can make small but important changes to their office practices that are both green and healthy. Our hope is that this blog will serve as a resource for anyone who works in a medical office- places of health-and wants to help make it more sustainable. Physicians, nurses, and nurse-practitioners have been trained to cure the sick; this blog will help train them to create healing office practices, as well.
We hope that you will read along with us on our efforts to make office practices places of healing and wellness. A healthy environment is as important as a healthy diet, so please join us on the pathway to becoming the clinician you can be.