• Toxic Fashion

    Packaged foods (obviously) have ingredients lists. Our favorite beauty products have ingredients lists. And those cleaning products under the kitchen sink? Yup, they've got ingredients lists, too.

    Ever wonder why our clothes don't have ingredients lists? While we'd *like* to think our favorite garments are made of woven fibers and nothing more, the sad truth is there are countless unregulated chemicals in our closet go-tos (and these chemicals are likely harming our health).

    On today's show investigative journalist Alden Wicker explains why synthetic fashion and dyes made from fossil fuels are so deeply intertwined with the rise of autoimmune disease, infertility, asthma, eczema, and more; she also suggests concrete action steps for curating a clean(er) closet.

    * The book we're discussing today is our June Book Club selection. If you want in, please join us via Substack! https://sustainableminimalists.substack.com/

     

    Here's a preview:

    [7:00] Uncovering the chemicals in our clothes and what they're doing to our health

    [10:30] Taking a special look at the especially problematic petrochemical-based azo dyes (often used on petrochemical-based fibers)

    [17:00] If all this stuff is in our clothing, why don't garments have ingredients lists?

    [22:00] Carter's, Victoria's Secret, and victim body blaming

    [31:00] Why 'organic' doesn't mean much when it comes to clothing

    [36:00] For subscribers! Action steps for curating a clean(er) closet

     

    Resources mentioned:

     

    Resources mentioned:



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    E466 - 40m - May 16, 2024
  • Optimizing Your Walks

    Modern life panders to our innate desire to be sedentary, and never has it been more difficult to resist the alluring convenience of screens.

    Yet walking matters. On today's show author Annabel Abbs-Streets suggests tangible ways to attain the full range of benefits that walking has to offer — physical, emotional, and spiritual — that's backed by latest research.

     

    Here's a preview:

    [7:00] A laundry list of all the physiological benefits of walking and hiking for movement (get ready to be blown away)

    [11:00] Why it's important to walk with our eyes, plus: the mental health benefits associated with panoramic vision

    [16:00] Want more calm in your life? Research finds that these very specific nature sounds matter

    [21:00] Terpenes, baby! Large trees offer us these psychological and physiological benefits

    [25:00] Don't shy away from that mud puddle. Soil microbes matter!

    [30:00] How to best optimize your daily walk for health and wellness benefits

     

     



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    E465 - 37m - May 14, 2024
  • HEADLINES: Shrinking Fish

    The environmental news headlines you need to know for Friday, May 10 2024:

    [00:30] Fish are shrinking around the world and no one knows why

    [4:00] Have a gas stove? Here's another thing to worry about 

    [7:00] Exactly how green initiatives push some voters to the far right 

    [11:30]  A Sriracha shortage has climate change to blame

    [15:00] Climate change raises the risks of another pandemic, and here's why

     




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    18m - May 10, 2024
  • Produce Without Pesticides

    While fresh fruits and vegetables are irreplaceable parts of a healthy diet, pesticides aren't benign. Sadly, many of our favorite produce items carry unhealthy levels of pesticides, and each one comes with its own unique risk profile.

    On today's show: A comprehensive review of the most recent research into pesticides in produce.

    Here's a preview:

    [5:00] Not all pesticides are the same, and different pesticides have different risk profiles

    [10:00] DDT, bald eagles, Silent Spring, and America's history with pesticides

    [19:00] Stephanie's thoughts on the EWG's Clean 15 and the Dirty Dozen

    [25:00] Are the EPA's maximum residue limits too high?

    [30:00] ** You need to know about these countries with organic reciprocity!

    [34:00] Does peeling help? How should we best wash conventional produce?

    [38:00] For subscribers! 6 concrete action steps for informed consumers

     

    Resources mentioned:

     



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    E464 - 44m - May 9, 2024
  • The Cost Of Climate Change

    We know climate change is expensive, but how expensive is it really?

    A new analysis finds that beyond its effects on the broader economy, rising temperatures seriously hurt our personal finances. On today's show: A conversation with Alexandra Grose about what happens when climate change reduces lifetime income and simultaneously raises prices on ... well, everything.

     

    Resource mentioned:

    Climate Change Could Cost Each American Born Today $500,000 (via Consumer Reports)

     




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    E463 - 32m - May 7, 2024
  • HEADLINES: Ulterior Motives

    The environmental news headlines you need to know for Friday, May 3 2024:

    [1:30] Newly released documents and Big Oil's secret climate strategy

    [7:00] Here's what Patagonia's doing with all its profits

    [13:00] Therapists are trading the couch for the great outdoors, and here's why

    [16:00] Sea levels are rising in the US coastal South faster than anywhere else on Earth

     

    Resource mentioned:

     




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    18m - May 3, 2024
  • Roads Less Travelled

    Something semi-sad happens as we age: We lose our nimbleness. So many of us white-knuckle grip long-held habits and beliefs and thus fail to question whether such routines and ideas are working in our best interests. Worse, such rigidity goes directly against our "factory settings" as human beings: As a species, we fully live when we prioritize resilience, light-footedness, and fearlessness. (Don't believe me? Just observe a child!)

    On today's show: embracing fresh starts, prioritizing roads less travelled, and unpacking pressures associated with cultural uniformity with author and podcaster Shannon Leyko


    Here's a preview:

    [14:00] How to lean into tension by taking "messy action"

    [18:00] It's not *just* about trying a new hobby; it's about resiliency. Self-efficacy, too!

    [23:00] Timelines are rarely linear, and "starting over" isn't starting back at square one

    [30:00] Common struggles associated with living unconventionally in a conventional world

     

    Resources mentioned:

     



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    E462 - 37m - May 2, 2024
  • Greenwashing 2.0

    Many corporations are hopping on the sustainability bandwagon these days, but it's not for altruistic reasons. It's likely due to the green premium: because eco-friendly products cost more, business owners see an opportunity for increased revenue. 

    The result? Greenwashed products abound (And guess what? You're likely paying *extra* for a product that isn't at all eco-conscious!). 

    On today's show Aidan Riehl offers advanced tips for avoiding greenwashing in today's ever-changing market. 

     

    Here's a preview:

    [6:30] Some questions to ask: Is this eco-friendly product owned by a conglomerate? Is this one product the *only* eco-conscious product in their product line?

    [9:30] Getting to the bottom of "biodegradable" claims once and for all

    [16:30] Should we look for pre-consumer or post-consumer recycled plastics?

    [19:00] Laundry sheets and dishwasher pods! Is polyvinyl alcohol actually benign?

    [22:00] So many pledges, so little action

    [25:00] Steph's tips to spot greenwashing in influencer marketing

     

    Resources mentioned:

     




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    E461 - 31m - Apr 30, 2024
  • HEADLINES: Biggest Plastic Polluters Revealed

    The environmental news headlines you need to know for Friday, April 26 2024:

    [00:30] The world's biggest plastic polluters revealed

    [2:30] Biden limits oil drilling in the Alaskan arctic (it's also an election year)

    [5:00] One of the worst coral bleaching events happening right now in the Great Barrier Reef

    [8:00] Nearly 2 in 5 Americans live in a place with unhealthy or hazardous air. Are you one of them?

    [12:00] Can cloning be a legitimate solution to species extinction?

     

    Resource mentioned:

    One million species face extinction, U.N. report says. And humans will suffer as a result. (via WaPo)

     




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    15m - Apr 26, 2024
  • Pleasure-Saturated

    We Homo Sapiens are notorious for avoiding pain and seeking pleasure. In fact, we have transformed the planet from a place of scarcity to a place of overwhelming abundance, with ample opportunities to flood our brains with dopamine at every turn.

    But over-consuming has consequences: Exposure to prolonged and repeated pleasurable stimuli decreases our capacity to tolerate pain and increases our threshold for experiencing pleasure. 

    On today's show: Resetting your neural set point to make dopamine work FOR you, not against you.


    Here's a preview:

    [3:00] Here's exactly why our brains aren't designed to work optimally in our 2024 world of pleasure

    [7:00] Measuring the dopamine-induced addictive potential of various foods, habits, and drugs

    [10:00] What goes up must come down: Here's what opponent process theory means for you and your brain

    [14:00] Quantifying leisure time from the Civil War to present day

    [24:00] Dopamine fasts work! Here's how to recalibrate your brain

    [28:00] How to best lean into a bit of pain (and why you may want to)

     

    Resources mentioned:

     




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    E460 - 38m - Apr 23, 2024
  • Labors Of Love

    Last year was the hottest year on record, so it's safe to say that Earth Day as we traditionally celebrate isn't working.

    On today's show I suggest what I believe is the antidote to the climate crisis (and I'm willing to bet you won't be able to guess what it is!).

     

    Here's a preview:

    [3:45] The Big 5: We know what we should do environment-wise, so why aren't we doing it?

    [7:15] Communal care is anti-capitalist, and that's really darn important

    [16:30] Here's what research finds re: the relationship between collectivist culture and pro-environmental behaviors

    [24:00] If the problem is disconnection, is the solution as simple as authentic reconnection?

    [34:00] It's actually not hard at all to pivot from the conventional, negative feedback loop we find ourselves currently in

     

    * A note from Stephanie: No Headlines Friday, and Tuesday's episode will be out next Wednesday!




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    E402 - 40m - Apr 18, 2024
  • The Great Connector

    Reminder! Our hands can do more than type and text. In fact, they can grow things.

    On today's show — and in honor of National Gardening Day! — permaculture expert Kareen Erbe lists countless tangible and intangible benefits associated with active participation in your local growing community; she also offers practical suggestions for getting off our screens and reengaging with the natural world.

     

    Here's a preview:

    [8:00] Industrializing our food systems has benefits, sure. But in doing so, what have we sacrificed?

    [19:00] Industrial agriculture is the problem, but agriculture is also the solution

    [23:00] Don't want to grow anything? You don't have to! Here's how to best invest in your *local* food systems

    [27:00] It's not that local, organic food is so expensive; it's that corporate, industrialized food is too cheap

    [31:00] The 5 S-es: Scalable tips for newbie growers

    [35:00] Kids who grow kale eat kale!

     

    Resources mentioned:

     



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    E458 - 44m - Apr 16, 2024
  • HEADLINES: Geoengineering

    Identifying 5 expensive and downright impractical geoengineering ideas designed to curb global warming:

    [5:30] 2 direct carbon capture projects (one of which plans to drill more oil)

    [8:30] A gigantic umbrella in space?

    [10:00] Adding iron to the ocean in hopes of spurring algae blooms

    [13:00] Sending sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere in weather balloons, oh my

     

    Resources mentioned:

     



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    16m - Apr 12, 2024
  • Stealthily Frugal

    Take stealth wealth and reverse it: Stealth frugality is what happens when a person lives big without spending lots of money. 

    On today's show: A laundry list of the ways in which we can each live a rich life but do so frugally. 

    *A note from Stephanie: I mention a ridiculous amount of companies in today's show. None of them are sponsored!

     

    Here's a preview:

    [6:00] Home is where the heart is, so open up your home!

    [10:30] Pizza? Cocktails? Manicures? Learn how make/do what you love but better

    [14:30] #selfcare culture is a capitalist construct (and you should never have to pay to care for your SELF)

    [19:00] How to enjoy your hobbies without going all-in with the extras

    [23:00] Want to eat like royalty? Learn how to cook

    [30:00] Get yo' hands on some great reading material (without overspending!)

     

    Resources mentioned:

    --



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    E457 - 37m - Apr 11, 2024
  • Disconnecting

    Work emails. Social media notifications. Weather alerts. The constant news cycle.

    In the hustle and bustle of modern life, it's easy to get lost in the chaos of endless distractions. Yet research has shown that information overload can lead to mental exhaustion, reduced cognitive function, and an inability to make sound decisions. On the other hand, intentional disconnection has the power to enhance creativity and productivity. It improves overall well-being, too.

    On today's show podcaster Diane Boden and I discuss exactly why it's so important to disconnect from modern distractions at least once in awhile; we also brainstorm how to best unplug.

     

    Here's a preview:

    [12:00] Are we becoming a culture that can't sit with negative emotions? With boredom?

    [16:30] Blue laws once encouraged rest; these days stores are open 7 days a week (thanks, capitalism!)

    [23:00] Stephanie's Number One tip for mindfulness newbies

    [26:00] Hurry culture, busy-ness, and setting professional boundaries

    [30:00] Do you watch TV while scrolling on your phone? Theres a name for that! Outlining the (numerous) consequences associated with 'continuous partial attention'

     

    Resources mentioned:

    --



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    E456 - 39m - Apr 9, 2024
  • Can We Have Kids And Nice Things?

    Can a white couch and a toddler coexist? 

    Research finds that environment impacts well-being, and we shouldn't have to wait 18 years to enjoy our homes. 

    On today's show we address the age-old question: Can we have kids and nice things? The answer is yes; here's how.

     

    Here's a preview:

    [6:00] Hey you. (Yes, you!) You don't have to wait 18 years to enjoy your home

    [21:00] Don't invest in expensive accents and accessories! Go big on the timeless staples, instead 

    [25:00] Making a case for proudly using and displaying heirlooms

    [35:00] Exactly how to reframe accidents into teachable opportunities

     

    Resources mentioned:

    --




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    E455 - 43m - Apr 4, 2024
  • The Low-Tox Life

    Living the low-tox life can seem expensive and out of reach. But it doesn’t have to be.

    On today's show podcaster Regan Nelson suggests 7 research-backed ways to reduce your exposure to toxins that just so happen to *also* be free. 

    * This show is listener-supported, and we are about halfway to goal. Thank you for supporting!


    Here's a preview:

    [10:00] Lead! Pesticides! Here's what's on the bottom of your shoes 

    [14:00] Sure, this household staple is convenient (but it's also bisphenol- and phthalate-laden)

    [19:00] Be wary of these "regrettable substitutions"

    [26:00] Are you still using products with synthetic fragrance? (Stop!)

    [34:00] Teens, tweens, and beauty products: How to best present the "less is more" message


    • Join our (free!) community here.
    • Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Youtube.
    • Say hello! MamaMinimalistBoston@gmail.com.


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    E454 - 38m - Apr 2, 2024
  • HEADLINES: The Economics Of Climate Change

    The enviro-news you need to know for Friday, March 29 2024:

    [00:30] Here's why Americans pay the most after a natural disaster

    [6:00] New laws against intentional methane release, plus: why this new law is a money maker 

    [9:00] Throwing $$ at the industrial carbon emissions problem

    [12:00] Introducing radar gaps (a.k.a. another thing to worry about)

     

    Resources mentioned:

     



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    17m - Mar 29, 2024
  • Lights Out

    Fossil fuels power our modern lives, and yet fossil fuels are also powering global warming. Because many of us lack the self-sufficient skills necessary to survive an extended power outage event, we are one thing and one thing only: vulnerable.

    We have become over-reliant on the very thing that's destroying our planet. On today's show: Imagining the ways in which modern life, interpersonal connections, well-being and more would change in a hypothetical, fossil fuel-free world.

     

    Here's a preview:

    [6:00] We are so reliant on electricity that we are incapacitated without it. This is a problem!

    [11:00] In the event of a 2-weeks plus outage, modernity would look a lot different

    [24:00] Is minimalism late stage capitalism personified?

    [28:00] Without fossil fuels, we'd be circular

    [30:00] What research says with regard to the wellness benefits of working with our hands

     

    Resources mentioned:

     

    --



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    E453 - 36m - Mar 28, 2024
  • House Rules

    When it comes to furnishing and styling ours homes, we all deserve spaces that facilitate easeful living. But for those of us without an eye for design? Furniture and decor mistakes can happen (and they can be costly).

    On today's show best-selling author Myquillyn Smith reveals her signature house rules for homes of every size, style, and budget; she also shows us how to get the most amount of comfort from our space with the least amount of stuff.


    Here's a preview of the house rules we are discussing today:

    [16:30] Threes, please

    [21:00] Resourcefulness is the ultimate resource

    [25:00] Plan on the kids growing up 

    [29:00] Timelessness is here to stay 

    [34:00] The size of your house does not dictate the size of your hospitality

     

    Resources mentioned:

     

     



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    E452 - 39m - Mar 26, 2024
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