JOIN US AT OUR CLIMATE CONSCIOUS DINING EVENT(S):
Thursday, 10/24: Brodhead Center North Tower Entrance: 11am-1pm
Friday, 10/25: Marketplace: 11am-1pm
What is “Climate Conscious Dining”?
It’s probably no surprise to you that eating less meat is good for both you and the environment.
But what if you are not ready or are not able or just don’t want to give up meat? Well there’s good news, experts agree that simply reducing your overall intake of meat can help.
Here’s what that might look like:
· Livestock accounts for around 14.5 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases each year. That’s roughly the same amount as the emissions from all the cars, trucks, airplanes and ships combined in the world today. Consider reducing the overall quantity of meat you are eating at a meal to 3 oz or less- about the size of a deck of cards.
· Choose poultry or fish more often than beef (Of the food we most often eat, beef has the largest global carbon footprints due to deforestation for raising cattle and the surprisingly high amount of methane emitted from their burps and manure)
· Look for plant-based entrees on the menu, tofu, legumes, tempeh, seitan, TVP or other plant protein
· Look for non-meat animal protein based entrees like omelets and quiche
· Choose to eat vegetarian or vegan meals several times per week
“Plant Forward” is Climate Conscious
Following a plant forward formula using our Balanced Plate models (filling your plate with 2/3 vegetables, fruits and whole grains and 1/3 or less with animal proteins) you can create meals that lower your risk for cancer and other chronic diseases and maintain a healthy weight, at the same time that you are making environmentally sustainable choices.
A well balanced and appropriately planned plant forward diet may help protect against disease. A well balanced diet means that you are eating a balance of good quality protein substitutes such as legumes (pulses), tofu/edamame, nuts/seeds, low fat dairy or egg; plenty of whole grains, vegetables, fruits and healthy fat. As well as supplementing your diet with vitamins or other essential nutrients as needed.
Balancing your plate isn't a diet or another way of calculating calories, fat grams and carbohydrates, instead it's a fresh way of thinking about what you eat every day.
Be a Climate Conscious Diner using the Balanced Plate as a guide:
Reducing the portion of your plate that you fill with meat can lower your risk for cancer and other chronic diseases and help you maintain a healthy weight at the same time. It’s also a great start to reducing your plate’s carbon footprint. The Balanced Plate is a visual guide to plant-forward dining. Plant forward dining means that you reserve two-thirds of your plate for plant-based foods and just one-third of your plate for smaller portions of meat.
Interested in making a bigger impact? Use our Vegetarian Plate as a guide:
Removing meat from your plate, and filling it with plant-based foods, dairy, and/or egg products may provide health benefits for the prevention and treatment of some chronic diseases including hypertension, type two diabetes and some cancers. It also significantly reduces the carbon impact of your plate. The Vegetarian Plate is a helpful guide for making this choice, recommending you fill one-third of your plate typically reserved for meat with plant-based proteins and high-protein dairy items like cheese and eggs.*
Interested in going a step further? Use our Vegan Plate as a guide:
Removing meat from your plate, and filling it with well-balanced plant-based foods not only provides the same health benefits as the “climate bestie” plate, it is also the plate with the lowest carbon footprint. The Vegan Plate is a helpful guide for making this choice, recommending you fill the one-third of your plate typically reserved for meat with plant-based proteins.*
*Some vegetarians may not get enough vitamin B-6 and niacin from their diets, while vegans may have a higher risk of B12, zinc and omega-3 fatty acid deficiency than those who eat some animal products.
Be sure to speak with a campus nutritionist or your healthcare provider if you are interested in making significant changes to your diet. (919)-681-9355
While one person’s choices may seem insignificant, if they teach others about their choices, the collective impact can add up quickly. Making climate conscious dining the norm can make a big difference in our collective future.