Meat from all land animals and dairy is probably the most water (and air) consuming product you buy. For 1 kg of cheese it is about 5000 liters. The water ‘cost’ for a cotton T-shirt is just above 2500 liters and for a laptop to be produced 20 000 liters of fresh water is needed. Meat is still the worst as some eat it 3 (!!) times a day. The High Protein Diets have not helped the Earth in this way. Meat consumption has unfortunately gone up because of them.
If we compare different food and goods, everything coming from land animals is worst, because we eat and wear it so much. But if you buy more laptops than leather shoes you might be costing the water resources and Nature more. Find out what your water footprint is by the way you live on http://www.waterfootprint.org/?page=files/home
To be a Conscious Consumer is nothing else than to think before you buy. The most important question to ask is; Do I really need this? If all of us would think beyond ourselves when asking this we probably wouldn’t have many of the ecological (and health) problems we do today. Minimalistic consumption is the best consumption. You can do as Oprah Winfrey and many others, start by by cutting down on animal food, and meat more than anything.
The health benefit is huge, and a plus if you care more about Nature and your footprint than your body. Don’t believe me? Check out this video with a 98 year old heart surgeon who stopped eating food from animal sources when he realized he never had to operate a vegan.