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How to pack a true green lunch

Why not pack a green lunch?
Why not pack a green lunch?
Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

Why not incorporate green lunches into your family routine to give mother nature a helping hand? Packing a lunch is an ecofriendly activity from the start. Buying take out lunch each day promotes the use of disposable paper products. Avoid this waste by bringing lunch instead. Use these helpful tips to make it even greener.

Think reusable containers

It does little good to pack a lunch if you are still using disposables. When packing your go green lunch, think reusable. Skip the plastic utensils. Use real silverware. It can be brought home for washing and reuse. Rather than packing paper napkins, tuck in a cloth one instead. It's washable and lasts forever. Plus, think how posh it looks in your lunch box.

Say no to paper bags.

Paper bags can be reused but not as much as a cloth bag. If you do use paper bags, be sure to put them in the recycle pile. Get or make a nice reusable washable cloth bag. They can last for years. Save water too. Don't machine wash it every time. Just give it a wipe-down, then wash it once a week unless something is spilled on it.

Substitute aluminum foil for baggies when wrapping sandwiches and other dry foods.

Aluminum foil can be rinsed and added to the aluminum can recycling bin. If there's no fear of the food drying out, use a tied cloth bandanna. This works great for items like cookies and chips. Just place the food on the bandanna, gather the corners and tie them. Check your local department store for re-useable and washable already made sandwich bags.

What about soup and drinks?

How do I pack them in my lunch safely? It's ecofriendly to leave out the soda cans and drink boxes. I use an old fashioned thermos for wet foods, rather than plastic containers. Either one can be harmful to the environment. However, the thermos lasts much longer than plastic items. Bring a bowl to eat your soup in or just use the thermos cap.

What are the best green foods I can put in my lunch?

Fruits and veggies are a safe bet and easily transported. So are nuts and homemade foods. For the least impact on the environment, go organic. Pesticides and fertilizers used to produce fruits and vegetables in mass quantities can get into the soil. These also leech into our water supply and damage habitats.

This article was previously published by this author on Yahoo! It has been updated and edited for Examiner.

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