Earth Day Tips for Going Green and Eating Clean

Every year on Earth Day the world joins together to help make our planet a better place.  Some plant a garden, pick up trash or try to monitor their waste.  Eating healthy, minimally processed foods can really help the environment too. Our global food system can contribute to waste in a big way through production, consumption, and debris.

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Celebrating Earth Day on April 22 is a wonderful way to bring your family together and educate your kids about the importance of going green and eating clean.

Shop Organic and Non-GMO

Make healthy food choices that are good for both you and the environment.  Foods that are non-genetically modified organisms (non-GMO)  mean they are minimally processed and clean. The less food is processed, the less energy is required to make it, and the smaller environmental footprint food takes.

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Our ancient whole grain, gluten-free baking mixes are made using natural ingredients that are non-GMO, minimally processed and nutritious. Our mixes are labeled with the trusted Non-GMO Project Verified so we guarantee our ingredients are wholesome.  Zemas uses only ancient whole grains, including teff, quinoa flakes and millet, which provide a natural source of vitamins and minerals, and are easily digestible. Each mix also contains Zemas superseed trio (chia, hemp and flax meal) with built-in omega-3’s (healthy fats that fight inflammation), fiber, and protein for added nutrition.

Buying organic produce instead of conventional or eating grains like nutrient-rich quinoa instead of rice are other options for organic, non-GMO products.  The best organic produce often comes from local farms, for instance. Shopping local translates to a shorter time in transport and less fuel.

Go Vegan for the Week

Earth Day is the perfect time to try a vegan diet: no milk, cheese, eggs, honey or gelatin. A vegan diet includes fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and grains, all which require fewer resources to produce than meat and dairy. Not only are you eating healthy, but you are protecting our water, forests, climate and planet as a whole.

Cooking vegan doesn’t have to be complicated; fresh vegetables, fruits and herbs, healthy grains (choose ancient grains for the nutrients), an array of different spices, and nuts are all staples.  Stock your fridge with plenty of vegetables and fruits, and have healthy oils on-hand in your pantry. Veganism is incredibly good for you and your body.  All our mixes are labeled with the trusted Vegan certification.

Send “Environmentally Unfriendly” Packaging Packing

The packaging of food has a huge impact on our environment.  We are committed to to “clean” products and this translates into its new packaging, which is made from recycled paper and we are proud to be Sustainable Forest Initiative (SFI) Certified. The SFI label means our packaging is made from paper sourced from a certified forest and materials are recycled using socially sound practices. SFI promotes sustainable forestry management, improved forestry practices and responsible purchasing of forest products.

Use Less Energy for the Week

Try and see where you can eliminate the use of unnecessary energy.  Leave your car in the garage for the week to cut down on energy and try walking or biking. Public transportation is also available in many cities, which helps reduce energy.  If this is not an option, save up all your errands for one day and just use your car on one day.  Check your schedule for the week and see where and when you can cut out driving.

Use less electricity and tap into green energy sources like wind or solar if they are available.  Some ways to save electricity can include using natural light, changing your bulbs to LED, unplugging appliances, and turning off the lights when you are away from home.

Community Service

Joining a community service project on Earth Day is a great way to give back to our planet and meet new people in your community. Get your whole family involved in a project., such as cleaning up a local park, beach, or forest preserve.  Check your local park districts or facilities for opportunities.

Separating recyclables from the trash is also something the whole family can do.  Many communities have opportunities to help with this on a large scale. If nothing seems to be available, put together your own Earth Day project.  Decide what YOU think is a great project and get family and friends together to help.

Consider these Earth Day tips to eat more conscientiously while acting more environmentally responsibly.  YOU can make a difference!

To get your kids in the Earth Day spirit, let them “dig in the dirt” in your kitchen by making Zemas Gluten-Free Dirt Dessert.

 

Zemas Gluten-Free Dirt Dessert

 This is a great recipe to celebrate on Earth Day.  It requires some planning.  You will need 8-10 pre made Zemas Gluten Free Black Bean Brownies (defrosted from freezer works, too).  You will also need 2 cans of full fat coconut milk put in fridge the night before.

Step #1:

Pastry cream:

4 egg yolks

1 ½ T arrowroot/tapioca starch

1/3 c. palm sugar

1 1/3 c. almond milk(or milk of choice)

2 t. pure vanilla extract

Combine all the ingredients except for vanilla, in a saucepan.   Over a high heat, bring the ingredients to a boil while stirring constantly with a whisk.  Once it boils, lower the heat and simmer until thickened still stirring, this will keep the pastry cream smooth.  Once thickened, stir in the vanilla.  Pour the pastry cream into a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap (the plastic should touch the cream).  Place in refrigerator to cool.

Vegan Pastry Cream (go Vegan for Earth Day!):

Make the pastry cream without the eggs.  Follow the recipe as is, but when you add the vanilla also add in 3 tablespoons dairy free butter.

Step #2:

Whipped Cream:

2 cans full-fat coconut milk

6 T. pure maple syrup

1 t. vanilla

In a mixer fitted with the whip attachment combine all the ingredients and mix on high speed, until peaks form.

Step #3al health food store)

1 bag gluten-free, vegan gummy worms(available on Amazon or in your local health food store)

8 pre-made Zemas Gluten Free Black Bean Brownies, crumbled so it resembles dirt

Step #4:

Assembly:

Fold the whipped cream into the pastry until it is all combined.  Pour this into a deep glass dish(this is the inner Earth’s core).  Spread crumbled brownie crumbs evenly across the pastry layer.  This is your dirt.  Decorate with the gummy worms.  Dig in and enjoy.

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