Gardening is much more than just an entertaining hobby, it’s also an activity that can improve your health. Here are some of the lesser-known reasons why gardening is good for your health:
1. Burns Calories
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that gardening for one hour can burn around 330 calories, which is more than you would burn weightlifting for the same amount of time. If you’re trying to maintain or lose weight, consider adding gardening to your daily routine.
2. Reduces Stress
Researchers in the Netherlands conducted a study with two different groups of students that were asked to complete a stressful task. At the end of the task, one group was told to garden for 30 minutes while the other was told to read. The group that gardened reported lower levels of stress than the group that read, which shows that gardening is an effective way to reduce stress. If you decide to garden in order to relieve stress, make sure you create a simple garden that will be easy to maintain.
3. Improves Mental Health
Another study asked people who had been diagnosed with depression, or bipolar II disorder to spend six a hours a week gardening. At the end of the study, the majority of the participants reported a significant improvement in their depression or bipolar II disorder symptoms. This study shows that gardening may have the power to improve mental health as well as physical health.
4. Lowers Heart Disease and High Blood Pressure Risk
People who are overweight, inactive, or under a great deal of stress are at a higher risk of suffering from heart disease or high blood pressure. Fortunately, gardening can help you maintain a healthy weight, stay active, and relieve stress. This means that gardening on a regular basis can prevent heart disease, high blood pressure, and other similar health conditions.
5. Reduces Alzheimer’s Disease Risk
The Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease recently published a study that found engaging in certain physical activities, including gardening, may lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease. Researchers concluded that gardening could lower your risk of developing this devastating condition by about 50%.
6. Healthier Diets
Are you planting produce in your garden? If so, gardening may help you enjoy a healthier diet. According to the American Journal of Public Health, people who choose to grow their own produce eat more fruits and vegetables than people who buy these foods. This is just one of several benefits of growing your own produce. Homegrown produce also tends to have more flavour than produce that you buy at the store. Plus, homegrown produce can be grown without the use of pesticides, so they won’t contain any harmful chemicals.
7. Promotes Clearer Thinking
Several studies have found that being around nature can improve your concentration and promote clearer thinking, which is why teachers are often encouraged to put plants in their classrooms. Surround yourself with the plants in your garden to clear your head and find your focus.
Now that you know the many health benefits of gardening, what are you waiting for? Head outside and get your hands dirty so you can start to reap some of these rewards!
Ashley Smith is an author, real estate expert and mother of two beautiful young girls. She is passionate about home decor, green technologies and Yoga. Her hobbies include reading about interior design and writing about her daily experiences. She loves helping people with her knowledge so that they can fulfil their dreams.