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My Struggle With Plastic: 10 Tips for Avoiding It

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My Struggle With Plastic: 10 Tips for Avoiding It

A few years ago when I was starting this blog, I thought to myself, “I need a stunt.” The first stunt that came to mind was spending a year without buying or using any plastic. That thought lasted about 15 minutes. And I launched this blog without any stunts, just me and my crazy recipes and ideas. But alas, it is the final days of the Plastic Free Challenge at Rodale.com, so I want to do my part to help out. Today I will share my thoughts for eliminating plastic. And next week, I’ll share my list of challenges that we need some creative entrepreneurs to figure out.

But let me just start by saying the bane of my plastic existence is Polly Pocket, the completely unnecessary and yet totally beloved teeny-tiny plastic doll and toys that my 4-year-old discovered from her older sister, long before she reached the choking-hazard-free years. I am constantly yelling at her to Take That Plastic Out Of Your Mouth Right Now Or I Will Throw It In The Trash! And cleaning up cat vomit that has Polly Pocket outfits in it; there is clearly something orally stimulating to cats about the little princess outfits and shoes the size of ants. Well, I will be a totally evil mother if I ban Polly Pocket. So there is a Polly Pocket Exception to my plastic-reduction efforts.

Here are my top 10 tips for eliminating plastic—other than Polly Pocket—from your life:

1. Use food storage containers made of glass and stainless steel. These are getting easier and easier to find; some containers may have a plastic lid, but the plastic won’t touch the food.

2. For outdoor dining, use enamel plates and cups and stainless steel utensils. So what if you have to wash them? They won’t break if they get dropped or knocked over. And they make dining outside feel like an old-fashioned picnic, rather than a plastic trash fest.

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Read more: Children, General Health, Green Kitchen Tips, Healthy Schools, Home, Maria's Farm Country Kitchen, Reduce, Recycle & Reuse, , , ,

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152 comments

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6:06AM PST on Nov 10, 2013

Thank you

12:13AM PST on Nov 8, 2013

great info! thanks for sharing!

9:59AM PST on Mar 2, 2012

Hate plastic! Thanks for sharing these tips.

1:47PM PDT on Jul 18, 2011

I think that beverage companies should end using plastic including the holders that are wrapped around the 6 packs. They should market selling resusable totes- or wrap with sustainable hemp rope. Anything but the blasted plastic that ends up in the ocean, and around a pelican or dolphin's head. If you must buy be sure to cut the plastic holders to open the loop before tossing into recycle bin.

10:57AM PDT on May 1, 2011

Hi all,
I'm trying to implement a recycling program in my local Atlanta Public Schools. Please sign the petition I've started to make this goal a reality! It will only take a minute or two of your time and it's for a good cause- best of all, it's a cost-free way for you to make a positive change :) Just copy and paste the link to your browser. Thank you!
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/recycle-atlanta-pubilicschools/


7:40PM PDT on Apr 18, 2011

Bags pictured aren't compostable either, compostable-fairtrade ones are available nowadays!

11:29AM PDT on Mar 30, 2011

Thanks

9:07AM PDT on Mar 29, 2011

We try to go "plastic-free", but sometimes it's impossible.

10:06AM PDT on Mar 24, 2011

Thank you for the tips!

6:52PM PDT on Mar 14, 2011

An alternative to no 8 which means even less stuff going into land fill is to use a menstrual cup such as http://www.mooncup.co.uk/

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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