Many people think that lowering their ecological footprint will lower their standard of living but nothing could be further from the truth. The table on this page provides examples of how using our basic sustainability tips lowers your ecological footprint at the same time as it increases your well-being.

Sustainability supports well-being

Sustainability supports well-being in many ways.

It is wrong to think that being sustainable means impoverishment.

On the contrary there are enormous benefits to well-being by leading lives that are more meaningful and less harmful, less wasteful and less stressful– top people and planet.

The table below gives examples of how using the basic sustainability tips can support your well-being.

Fresh local produce

Practice Sustainability Well-being Notes

House Insulation,
Passive solar heating

Less fossil fuels used
Lower emissions
Warmer, drier houses are healthier Cold homes have been linked to cardiovascular disease and respiratory illness. Indoor dampness and mould have been linked to asthma, respiratory infections and rheumatic fever.

Walking and cycling

Less fossil fuels used
Lower emissions
Increases fitness and overall health. Less traffic. Regular exercise has many health benefits and has been linked to better mood. It also means less cars on the road, therefore less congestion, stress and accidents.

Eating fresh food,
mostly plants

Less ecological footprint Fresh food and plants are better for you than processed food and meat The food pyramid recommends the bulk of our diet should be plant-based and meat and animal products, which also have a much higher ecological footprint, should be minimised. Processing adds many ingredients than can be detrimental to our health including sugar and salt.

Using natural products

Less toxins, less mining,
biodegradable
Harmless, non-toxic products are better for your health Synthetic products, especially those made from hydrocarbons, are often not biodegradable leading to the build-up of waste, including harmful toxins, in the environment.

Buying second hand, reusing, recycling

Less resources used Saves money Anything that saves money can help improve well-being. It means less money worries and could lead to having a better work-life balance.

Sharing and giving

Less resources used Makes you feel good A 2008 study found that giving money to someone else lifted participants’ happiness more that spending it on themselves.
In general:

Buy less, simplify, downsize

Less resources used Saves money,
Less anxiety and stress,
Better work-life balance

Smaller ecological footprint

= Sustainability + Well-being