50 Planet-Friendly Protein Choices

By PSU EcoMerge Capstone - 12:17 PM


This is a look at the different protein options and which/how they can be sustainable.
The body of information you will get from this post is entirely from www.newhope360.com in an article of the same name by Melanie Warner.
We are assuming that most people want to include animal protein in their diet for some reason or another, but we all want to treat our bodies and planet better.
First buy organic, pastured, locally raised meats!
LEGUMES – They don’t require fertilizer, but if they are not organic can have pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, etc. They are very eco-friendly and an inexpensive choice for protein.
SOY – Soy is one of the best sources of protein, but make sure its organic, 90% of US soybean crops are use (GMO)
SEAFOOD - “Captured, or wild, fish win on every imaginable metric—energy use, water consumption, pollution, fertilizer, antibiotics, and pesticides,” says Ray Hilborn, PhD, professor of aquatic and fishery sciences at the University of Washington in Seattle.  The negative side of this, is many of the world’s fisheries are being overfished.  The website suggests watching motereybayaquarium.org’s website for regional guides on which are best to consume.
CHICKEN and EGGS – Eggs are more sustainable than chickens.  Each chicken can lay 500 eggs, while only supply one body on its own.  There are many farms that use chemicals, antibiotics, and have terrible conditions for their chickens, so it’s best to buy organic and pastured.
DAIRY – Dairy sources of protein are only second to beef as the worst environmentally conscious protein.  The site does declare that if you consume Dairy it is much healthier from organically raised cows. 
BEEF – Just like dairy, beef is healthier and better on the environment if it is grass fed and raised organically, but it is still the “hummer of protein-rich foods.”
PORK – Pork converts feed into protein better than beef, but may be the highest risk of danger to your health and the environment due to its high level of wastes produced.  They suggest if you must have pork, at least get organic.
You can find more material and even recipes at this web site.

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