Friday, October 20, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality During Healthy Lung Month
Emily Walsh, Community Outreach Director for the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance, recently contacted us here at [1THING] and was kind enough to guest write a great feature article for Healthy Lung Month. She has some interesting information about indoor air pollution and offers ways to improve the air quality in your home and office, which can also improve your health. Check out what she recommends:
Though it’s what most are aware of, outdoor land and air pollution like that from exhaust and industrial waste are not the only factors impacting the health of the environment, which in turn affects the health of our bodies. Indoor air quality is composed of the number, or lack-thereof, of pollutants, both natural and man-made, that contaminate the air of homes, workplaces, and other enclosed buildings. Americans spend on average 20 hours per day indoors where they are inhaling oftentimes stale, unfiltered air, so it is essential that those spaces are just as clean and pure as we hope and expect our outside air to be.
Indoor air pollution can lead to multiple health issues from simple eye, nose, and throat irritation, to pneumonia, cancer, and even death, dependent on what one is exposed to. Mold growth, for instance, can cause respiratory issues and enhance the effects of asthma or COPD for those who already suffer through those afflictions. Meanwhile something seemingly minor like cooking and heating the home with solid fuels (wood, charcoal, peat, pellets, etc.) is attributed to 4.3 millions premature deaths each year. Identifying recurring symptoms like dizziness or headaches while in your home or place of work is the first step to combating and preventing a serious health hazard. However, some illnesses like mesothelioma, caused by asbestos exposure, don’t develop noticeable symptoms for years, so taking steps to improve air quality is recommended no matter the current state of your health.
Often produced from what is brought into the home, pollutants come in the form of particulate matter, toxins and chemicals. Ultimately, improving indoor air quality comes down to source control, and improving or installing a ventilation system. Sources like dust collecting in a long pile carpet, pollen from flowering indoor plants, second-hand smoke, or an unnatural ingredient in an air freshener have simple fixes of cleaning more often or removing certain products from the building. Other sources, however, are more complicated and may require renovation. Mold is usually caused by water damage or a leak; asbestos is found in old homes where products containing the mineral are deteriorating; and radon is most often a result of a leak in the basement and requires a pipe to reroute the gas away from the home. If symptoms persist even after finding what you believe is the source, natural ventilation like opening windows, or a more costly approach like an HVAC system may be necessary.
We only have one body and one life, so take notice of any changes to your health when you move into a new home or office, or start frequenting a new building. Indoor environment is equally as important as outdoor when it comes to health.
Community Outreach Director
Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance
Monday, October 16, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
This is #1Thing that is Big Time Important when it comes to keeping Mama Earth / Austin area Clean! If you have left over medications, don’t toss them in the trash or flush them down the toilet. Keep them from getting into our land fills and bodies of water that will create problems w/ just about everything in the eco-system.
It’s hard to know what to do w/ them. There is ‘National Prescription Drug Take Back Day’ which is Saturday, October 28th from 10am-2pm. I have disposed of my expired prescription medications the past few years when I found out about this day. You can find drop off locations closest to you in the ATX area. Click here!
I also found out more cool #1Thing 411! Austin has 2 secured Drop-off Kiosks! wanted to spread the word.
Is your medicine cabinet filled with drugs or medications you no longer use? Expired prescription or over-the-counter drugs? Proper disposal of medicines prevents poisoning of children or pets and misuse of medication… also the poisoning of our Eco-System. This 1Thing is a HUGE HELP! We should all do this!! Here’s the 411 on the Drop-off Kiosks-
Drop-off Kiosks – What items can be disposed of?
Only medications from individuals can be accepted. Inventory from pharmacies or healthcare facilities is not accepted. Disposal bins are secured to the floor and double-locked.
- Pills, tablets, capsules
- Blister packs
- Creams, ointments, lotions
- Inhalers, nebulizer
- Liquid medicine (no more than 4-oz.)
- Needles, syringes
- Vitamins, supplements
- Home-based care equipment
- Aerosol spray cans
- Alcohol or hydrogen peroxide
- No schedule I/illegal drugs
Travis County Constable Precinct 5
1003 Guadalupe St., Austin, TX 78701 Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
(short-term parking is available in the parking lot)
Forty Acres Pharmacy
100 W. Dean Keeton St., Austin, TX 78712 Monday – Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
(parking available in garage behind pharmacy)
Click here for lots more 411! Try this #1Thing! A Huge Help to Keep Austin Beautiful along w/ Mama Earth!
Tuesday, October 3, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
October is Vegetarian Awareness Month
Happy Vegetarian Awareness Month! If you’ve been toying with the idea of going meat-free, this month is the perfect time to start. Vegetarian diets have proven health benefits, save animals’ lives and help to preserve the Earth.
- Reduce the risk of major killers such as heart disease, stroke and cancer while cutting exposure to foodborne pathogens
- Provide a viable answer to feeding the world’s hungry through more efficient use of grains and other crops
- Save animals from suffering in factory-farm conditions and from the pain and terror of slaughter
- Conserve vital but limited freshwater, fertile topsoil and other precious resources
- Preserve irreplaceable ecosystems such as rainforests and other wildlife habitats
- Decrease greenhouse gases that are accelerating global warming
- Mitigate the ever-expanding environmental pollution of animal agriculture
If you are a vegetarian and want to educate those around you, Vegetarian Awareness Month is a great time to raise awareness and encourage friends and family to join you in adopting a vegetarian diet. Here are some easy ways to do that:
- Make a list of your favorite vegetarian restaurants, or those that serve favorite dishes, for your friends and family—or take them to one of them to see (and taste) for themselves.
- Share some of your favorite vegetarian recipes with your friends and family members. Give them a recipe list, or make them one of your favorites and attach the recipe to it.
- Are you a gardener? Need to get rid of the last of your summer produce to make room for your cool season crops? If so, give those you love a basketful along with recipe and meal planning ideas. Not a gardener? Then shop at your local farmers’ market and give them a basketful from there.
- You can also organize a produce swap. This can be with friends and family or with other gardeners, to increase their awareness about the number of produce varieties to choose from.
If you are not a vegetarian, here are some tips for you:
- Observe Meatless Monday. This is a growing trend, and is a perfect way to kick off the month by eating meat-free for Vegetarian Awareness Day. You can also try to do this throughout the month and have a variety of vegetables to keep your diet interesting.
- Educate yourself about the nutritional benefits of a vegetarian diet and find out the other ways that it can benefit you.
- Go for one whole day as a vegetarian and tell friends and family you are doing this.
- Host a meatless meal or potluck with your friends. This will help all of you get more tasty recipe ideas and become familiar with different veggies.
- When you dine out, try the meatless options and encourage your friends to do the same.
The North American Vegetarian Society is giving non-vegetarians an added incentive to go meat-free. Pledge to go meat-free during Vegetarian Awareness Month and you’ll have the chance to win up to $1,000. Even just one day will make you eligible for the drawing.
Non-vegetarians who pledge to abstain from all meat, fish and fowl will be entered in a random drawing for cash prizes. Click here to find out all the details.
Tuesday, October 3, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
Green your Dental Routine for an October 1Thing you can continue to do. It will make Mama Earth and your mouth happy!
Green Your Dental Routine During National Dental Hygiene Month
October is National Dental Hygiene Month! It’s the perfect time to make a few eco-friendly changes to your dental routine that will help keep your teeth clean and healthy while helping to save the environment:
Turn Off the Faucet – By turning off the faucet while you are brushing your teeth, you can save up to 8 gallons of water per day, that’s over 200 gallons a month! Conserving natural resources helps to improve the environment around us.
Do Not Flush Floss – It is important to properly dispose of floss. Non-biodegradable nylon floss cannot dissolve in water and will not break down like other disposable products. When floss is flushed down the toilet, it works its way through the water system and out into the ocean, polluting the water and potentially killing birds, animals and sea-life through accidental ingestion. This is avoidable by simply throwing floss into the garbage. You can also purchase floss packaged in cardboard containers, which helps to reduce plastic waste in our landfills.
Try Silk Floss – Floss creates waste if you’re using a brand that is primarily made of out plastic. A great floss to check out is made by Radius and is made out of 100% natural silk. According to their website the silk is organic and biodegradable. So, floss and then toss (it on the compost pile).
Green Your Toothbrush – This is an incredibly easy change to make because more and more grocery stores are carrying options. Check out this post dedicated to this topic called “Green Your Toothbrush! (And Look Good Doing It)” where you can find some really great info!
Recycle/Reuse Toothbrushes, Packaging, Toothpaste Tubes, Mouthwash Bottles and Floss Containers – It is estimated that 50 million pounds of toothbrushes are thrown into U.S landfills each year. Help clean up the environment by purchasing recyclable toothbrushes. Terracycle and Preserve are two companies that offer eco-friendly options to recycle toothbrushes, packaging, toothpaste tubes, and floss containers. You can also reuse toothbrushes around the house for cleaning appliances, jewelry and even your shoes. Before you toss your toothbrush, try and find a creative way you can use it instead.
Unplug Your Electric Toothbrush Charger – It isn’t necessary to charge your electric toothbrush every day, all day. The average brush lasts several weeks between charges and it is usually easier on the battery to not be charged constantly. Maybe you don’t put your toothbrush back on the charger but leave the charger plugged in? When an electrical item is left plugged in even though it’s turned off, it is still very likely consuming some electricity. So to better safe then sorry, unplug that charger!
Turn Off the Lights – When possible, use natural lighting when brushing your teeth. If this is not an option, you can replace old bulbs with CFL or LED lights to help conserve energy.
Slow Down – Don’t brush so hard and be gentle on your gums. It will make your toothbrush last longer, saving you money and reducing waste.
Leave the Car at Home – If possible, walk or ride your bicycle to your dental appointment.
These small changes to your dental routine can make all the difference in helping to conserve energy and natural resources and help clean up the environment.
Sources: White Dental Studio, Gentle Dental
Wednesday, September 27, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
The month of October shows Love for the Vegetarian Diet and Green Halloween Tricks and Treats and more. You do 1Thing it will help Mama Earth, which is important to us all, since we live on her. Pick one, two or more and go for it! Do #1Thing.
- October is Vegetarian Awareness Month. Eating more plant-based foods such as vegetables, fruits and legumes and cutting out meat will boost your body’s health and reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and even some cancers. Plus going meatless has environmental benefits such as cutting greenhouse gas emissions produced by livestock by 70%.
30 Day Vegetarian Diet Vegetarian Awareness Month Vegan Diets Reduce Global Warming
- Think Green when it comes to Halloween. Avoid costumes w/ toxic chemicals. Use existing clothing and fashion costumes from recycled materials. Host a community costume swap. Decorate Naturally with locally grown pumpkins to reduce waste and carbon emissions. Celebrate at a local farm w/ hay rides, corn mazes and yummy produce. Make it a Green Halloween
- October is Adopt a Dog month. Adopting is Greener than Breeding. Each year 4-5 million dogs (& cats) are put down in shelters across the country. Keep the good of saving their life by caring for them in an eco-friendly way. Get organic food and treats. Buy pet products made with organic or recylced materials. Buy local – the less time spent driving makes for a healthier and happier pet and environment.
8 Tips for Raising Environmentally Friendly Cats and Dogs
- This October Choose Green Spirits. A growing number of breweries and wineries are adhering to organic, environmentally-conscious practices and are working toward operating with 100% sustainable energy. Many parts of the country have local wineries that produce delicious, organic products each season. If local varieties aren’t available to you, check out this green wine guide to help you make some tasty, healthy picks.
Easy 1Things that can be done to have fun and help Mama Earth at the same time. Give one or two or more a try. You will be making a Big difference.
Friday, September 22, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
Entercom’s #1Thing featured organization for October of 2017 was chosen by our sister cluster Entercom San Diego.. Surfrider Foundation.
The Surfrider Foundation is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network.
Our ocean faces growing challenges from pollution, offshore development and climate change. At the same time, expanding industries, such as offshore oil drilling, threaten to crowd our ocean and degrade its health (and those who call it home!).
Every day poses new threats to our oceans and beaches. Our ocean and special places must be proactively protected before they are threatened and stem the tide before further damage is done to the ocean’s health.
This is precisely why Surfrider has built a network of passion-driven people who are on the ground and are the voice for our ocean and beaches. With one foot in the sand and the other in the water, Surfrider is the only non-profit organization who is 100% focused on our coasts.
Visit Surfrider.org to find out more and to donate now!
Tuesday, July 25, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
A total Solar Eclipse is expected to cross the entire country on Monday, August 21, 2017 for the 1st time since 1918. As long as the weather cooperates, everyone nationwide should be able to view the Solar Eclipse as the Moon passes in front of the Sun causing a shadow on Earth and making it look like nighttime during the daytime. According to NASA the total Solar Eclipse will start near Lincoln City, Oregon 12:15 CST and end near Charleston, South Carolina around 1:48pm CST. It will last about 1 hour 40 minutes. Plan ahead for taking the day off, or take an extended lunch hour on 8/21/17.
DO NOT EVER LOOK INTO A PARTIAL SOLAR ECLIPSE W/ YOUR NAKE EYE. It’s ONLY SAFE to look at the Moon when it’s FULLY BLOCKING the Sun.The only safe way to view it is is through a specialized filter. Eclipse Glasses have these, but you need to make sure they are the Real Deal. If you’re not sure.. DON’T LOOK DIRECTLY INTO THE SOLAR ECLIPSE! You can damage your eyes, even GO BLIND… NO JOKE! You will know when you can look at the Solar Eclipse when you’re wearing the Eclipse Glasses and it becomes so dark you can’t see anything. This is when you’ll know it’s safe to take them off for a quick peek .. then back on for your Eye Safety!
Partial Eclipses can be observed indirectly by projection, in which viewers watch the Solar Eclipse on a screen. These can be easily constructed at home with a few, simple materials – such as a piece of paper and cardboard box. Click here to find out how to create a DIY Simple Card Projector to use during the Solar Eclipse. You can keep it, or recycle it when you are done. A special #1Thing for Mama Earth after watching an Amazing Show.
Whatever techique you decide to use, DO NOT STARE CONTINUOUSLY AT THE SUN! Take breaks and rest your eyes. Remember, regular sunglasses DO NOT protect your eyes well. Use the Eclipse Glasses. Click here to find out more from NASA so you are prepared for Monday 8/21/17. ENJOY SAFELY!
No Glasses! No Problem! #GoMacGyver
NASA shared the Total Solar Eclipse’s Path Across the U.S
Thursday, June 29, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
Give this challenge a try. How much does your shopping tie in w/ ‘Sustainable Choices’. I landed in the mediocre category w/ 71 out of 100 points. I have room to work on things. How about you? Click here! #1Thing
Tuesday, June 27, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
Oceana, is an Entercom Featured 1Thing for July! Find out what you can do to help Mama Earth’s Ocean w/ Oceana!
Oceana, founded in 2001, is the largest international advocacy organization focused solely on ocean conservation.
Unfortunately, our oceans are in trouble — scientists report that the amount of fish caught from the oceans began declining — for the first time in recorded history — just a few decades ago.
Fortunately, Oceana knows how to fix things. Oceana seeks to make our oceans more biodiverse and abundant by winning policy victories in the countries that govern much of the world’s marine life.
The good news is that we can restore the oceans to their former glory. Oceana is…
They channel their resources towards strategic, directed campaigns to achieve MEASURABLE OUTCOMES that will protect and restore our oceans to former levels of abundance.
Oceana believes in the importance of science in identifying problems and solutions for the oceans.
Multi-disciplinary and expert
Their scientists work closely with teams of economists, lawyers, communicators, and advocates to achieve tangible results for the oceans.
Learn more at http://oceana.org/.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 | By Heather Rivera | No Comments
Eco-friendliness is important all across the country. Looks like some states believe that more than others. Finances also play an important part of being Green. Being sustainable and supportive of environmental security is a huge factor when it comes to successfully taking care of Mama Earth.
Then there’s Climate Change, from powerful damaging storms to extreme heat / droughts. These and more bad weather events are expecte to cause more than $500 Billion in property damage by 2100. Destroying the Earth on which we all live.
I know ATX is a pretty Green / Eco- friendly city, which is a huge plus for the state of Texas when it comes to being Green minded. It looks like other places in Texas need to boost up their Green Pride lots more according to this list… Texas didn’t make the top 10… not the top 20…. not even the top 30.
The state of Texas came in at #36! Spread the word that more needs to be done to help protect & preserve our environment. It’s the only one we have. Let’s take care of it! Do 1Thing to show Love to Mama Earth!
Click here to find out more!