Reducing Impact for Earth Day 2018


Earth Day 2018 is this Sunday the 22nd. Earth Day is the world’s largest environmental movement – and this year specifically targets plastic pollution.

Optimal Health Center is participating by, among other things, replacing all of our disposable beverage containers with reusable vessels that are repurposed, recycled, and, most importantly, non-toxic.

We’re loving our 100% silicone to go cups and have been getting raised eyebrows and questions from our favorite juice joints and coffee shops around town.

If you’d like more information, see our series of posts on plastic waste here and here.

Hydrate Responsibly. Really Responsibly.

Next in our series on medically and environmentally responsible hydration: The 16oz and 8z GoSili Cups from SiliKids.

What is it?

A cup/mug made from 100% silicone, with reinforced stainless steel ring embedded in the rim to hold it’s shape. At Optimal Health Center, the 16oz mug comes with the coffee lid and the 8oz cup comes with the SiliSkin sippy cover.

Why this vessel?


It’s a great alternative to the other reusable vessels we often see. No plastic means no BPA/BPB. It’s dishwasher, microwave, and freezer safe. Silicone can even be boiled to sterilize (for the super sensitive among us). Leave it in the cupholder of your car on a Palm Springs summer day without worrying the heat will leech plasticizers or other toxins into your drink.

Silicone is a natural insulator. So hot beverages stay warmer longer and cold beverages stay cooler longer. The wide mouth allows any style of beverage – water, smoothies straight from your blender, coffee, tea, or your favorite juice.

The SiliSkin sippy cover that comes with the kids’ cup can be used on the original cup, the mug, or any other reasonable jar or bottle – allowing you to repurpose those mason jars and apple sauce bottles instead of sending them to the landfill.

These cups can be used over and over again – replacing paper and plastic options and reducing pollution. Step up your non-toxic hydration game.

Side benefit for those of us who love our hot beverages hot, but still want to sip and savor… you can relax and pop your GoSili mug in the microwave for a few seconds to reheat your coffee or tea without worrying you’ll decompose the mug into your beverage.


Bring Your Own… Cup

Billions of disposable cups end up in landfills every year
8 million tons of plastic is dumped in the ocean yearly

5.25 trillion pieces of plastic trash are floating in our oceans. The Pacific Garbage Island alone covers an area ranging from the size of the state of Texas to the size of the country of Russia (!). And there are 5 of these types of islands. Plastic degenerates into fine particles and micro beads, which hover just below the surface, making it hard to see, but causing immense harm to marine life.

We live in a “throw-away” culture. One that enjoys a use-once-then-discard mentality about too many things. As a group, we often try to make ourselves feel better about our impact by committing to recycling. While worthy, recycling simply isn’t sufficient. Worse, it’s often not applicable. For example: did you know that many disposable paper cups cannot easily be recycled due to the plastic or wax coating on the inside that makes it waterproof? This paper biodegrades much slower in landfills for the same reason. The 5 major global garbage islands are just one example of the impact of our fixation on single-use items for convenience as opposed to necessity.

The reduce, reuse, recycle mantra is as important as it ever was. At Optimal Health Center, we took a look at which behaviors we could adopt to make positive change. We’ve elected to replace “convenience vessels” with reusable options at our homes and at our office. In other words, we’re choosing bottles, cups, and mugs made from sustainable, responsible, non-toxic materials that can easily be washed and reused indefinitely.

Why vessels? Everything needs to start somewhere. Our providers frequently recommend patients drink more water. Chronic dehydration is a common cause of health conditions, and in our Desert community, it’s even more prevalent. Life can be busy and hectic, and it’s so easy to just grab a bottle of water from the cooler at the convenience store and then toss it when it’s empty. That’s great for your hydration, but that bottle is terrible for the planet, and the toxicity in the plastic bottle isn’t healthy. The right vessels represent a one-two punch for healthy bodies and healthy environments.

We’ll publish a few posts in a series on medically and environmentally healthy hydration designed to help our patients and readers score points for themselves and for the planet.