Being Green: Good for the Land and Your Body

The Green Festival, America’s largest sustainability and green-living event, was held by May 31 and June 1 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

At the festival, participants had the opportunity to listen to speaker address ways that helps to create more sustainable community.

In the presentation, “Strategies for Ultimate Vitality & Longevity with Nutrient Dense Superfoods,” presented by Renita Reitz, the nutritionist explained a way to rejuvenate the body by presenting the nutritional values found in antioxidant food.

“When you use water and hibiscus tea as a base, and sweetness that comes from mulberries, not only is your food all-natural but also has a detoxification effect.” Reitz said.

The nutritionist also stressed on integrating healthy fats and fiber as part of a healthy diet.

“Consuming four to six tablespoons of coconut oil or eating a whole fruit of avocado is highly recommended. Your body needs to accumulate healthy fats apart from all the fat you accumulate from eating meat products.” Reitz said.

As a part of Green Festival’s effort to raise awareness on eco-friendly environment, professionals presented practical tips on how to garden in a way that is beneficial to the environment.

“One of the most important things to remember when gardening is to find the beauty in ecological function — not merely on the color of the flower.” Kim Eierman said. “We always have to think beyond the garden itself and think about the ecosystem and embrace biodiversity.”

Eierman warned the audience of the detrimental effect that many of our traditional gardening practices can have on the environment.

“Some of our standard gardening practices are actually damaging to the environment,” Eierman said. She noted the American love affair with lawns, our tendency to plant in monocultures, our emphasis on exotic, non-native plants, and our frequent use of pesticides. “Every landscape matters.” said Eierman.

Gabriel Axel, a neuroscientist gave a talk on the experiences he had with yoga and the effects that yoga had on his life.

“Despite the busyness that I had with life, yoga is a great place for me to cultivate my mind, soul and body. Yoga can be defined as a way to harness our being to its full-capacity.” Axel said.

Axel also explained how his studies in neurology also helped him in establishing his personal goals in doing yoga.
“I had a personal goal in mind going into yoga, a sense of devotion to nature, to align our lives more to the nature’s harmony. And this goes well with the festival’s theme of green living as well,” Axel said.

Companies that are in line with the festival’s eco-friendly values were exhibitors, including the Veri Soda Company—a organic soda company based in San Francisco.

“We are an organic soda company. In every can of soda we make, we have fruit juices and natural extracts to replace the artificial chemicals that other sodas have,” said Leonard Freeke, the founder of the Veri Soda. He went on to explain how he started to develop the idea of an organic soda and how he managed to produce organic soda.

“The idea of an organic soda came to my mind to give my own kids a healthier soda to drink,” Freeke said. “And when I conducted an extensive amount of research in creating a healthy soda, it wasn’t so easy. But we found a way to adapt recipes of the original sodas—sodas that were free from artificial flavors and chemicals.”

Over the years, Green Festival has become a platform for companies and organizations come to showcase their green-living products and services, and where locals go to learn how to live healthier, more sustainable lives.


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