New year, new you

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CHIT JUAN

CHIT JUAN

So now is the time for New Year’s resolutions. Everyone thinks of what they can possibly resolve or promise themselves to change. While others simply hope for a better year, a better me, and a better you.

I have many friends who want to do any or all of the following:

Meatless Mondays. If you cannot give up meat completely, at least give it up for day. A billion people doing that will greatly reduce the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Healthy Tuesdays. Have a healthy-stuff-only Tuesdays. Eat salads, fruits and maybe skip white rice completely. Stick to salads, soups and small plates of anything green.


Workout Wednesdays. Walk, jog, or run—anything just to move your body. Yoga is also recommended specially for those who have had injuries due to sports or active workouts like spinning or running.

No chicken Thursdays. Eating less chicken may also lessen your fat intake as most chicken dishes are fried. Even if they are boiled, chicken skin is still fatty and has too much calories so skip the skin. Always.

Fish on Friday. Whether it is Lent or not, have fish on Fridays. Fish, especially salmon, and deep-sea fish have lots of Omega-3 and has less fat, too.

Sunny Saturday. Get some sun and do some gardening while you’re out there. Sun especially during the early morning hours is good sun. Just 10 to 15 minutes may be enough to get your Vitamin D.

Relax Sunday. Rest from the gym, the sun and do a slow Sunday instead. We all need to recharge and reboot for up¬coming week ahead. Another 51 weeks of this new routine should give us a new body and a fresher spirit.

So what have you decided to skip or avoid? What have you decided to start doing? Whatever it is, the New Year is the best time to make that change.

But while the things above are merely suggestion, below the must-do’s for the New Year with no exceptions:

Promise to plant a tree or more. You may join us in planting coffee trees come July or August when the rains are more predictable. Let us know if you are interested and what area you wish to plant in. Just remember coffee needs elevation of at least 300 meters above sea level.

No elevation? No problem. Coconut grows at sea level. And we so desperately need more coconut trees. Especially with global demand for coconut water, Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) and Palm or Coconut sap sweetener (also called Coconut ‘sugar’)

Near the river or stream? Let’s plant bamboo. It holds a lot of water and multiplies fast as it is actually a grass. Even grass has a market. Bamboo, and even napier grass which animals eat.

How about fruit trees? Yes, we need to plant more indigenous species like our local santol, guava, and almost-forgotten fruits like chico, macopa and rimas. Already many people go into mango and banana plantations, but we can do the simple backyard varieties to bring back biodiversity in nature.

Just the fact you have reached this far in this article means you already have committed to do something good for yourself, your community and our planet.

New Year. New You. New hope for our planet. Let’s do it!

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Chit Juan is a founder and owner of ECHOStore sustainable lifestyle, ECHOmarket sustainable farms and ECHOcafe in Serendra , Podium, Centris QC mall, Davao, Cebu City Antipolo and now Iloilo City. She also is President of the Women’s Business Council of the Philippines and President of the Philippine Coffee Board Inc., two non-profits close to her heart. She often speaks to corporates and NGOs on sustainability, women empowerment, and coffee. You can follow her on twitter.com/chitjuan or find her on facebook:Pacita “Chit” Juan. Email her at puj@echostore.ph

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