How Can Gardening Boost Your Health?
Gardening is a popular pastime in the UK, with around 27 million people dedicating themselves regularly to growing an array of plants, flowers, and produce. One of the main reasons for its popularity is relaxation. Spending time outside planting seeds, pruning, fertilizing, and carrying out the wide array of tasks required to keep a garden healthy, are all mindful pursuits.
They enable people to keep their mind “in the present moment” and provide a great sense of achievement as plants and flowers grow and flourish. Whether you are new to gardening or you are a seasoned green thumb, the following reasons may convince you to commit to this pursuit as a means to improve your physical and mental health.
Planting the Seeds of Good Heart Health and Happiness
A 2011 study published by the American Society for Horticultural scientists found that horticultural activities provide stress relief, boost confidence and social skills, foster positivity, and rejuvenate the mind and body. The study, undertaken in part with a group of people with mental conditions, found that after gardening, participants’ heart rate variability increased. The findings also showed that people who took part in horticultural activities enjoyed a drop in cortisol (stress hormone) levels.
Spending Time Outdoors
Cornell University scientists have found that being around plants for just a few minutes a day can have a powerful effect on mental health. Their research, which focused on college students, showed that those who spend 10 minutes in a green setting felt happier and were more adept at staving off the symptoms of physical and mental stress.
Finding Motivating Projects
Gardening can be particularly motivating when you have a goal that you can achieve through commitment and consistency. Given the large numbers of animals that are going extinct owing to the scarcity of green areas, many home gardeners are taking part in fulfilling projects such as creating bird-friendly gardens. These gardens also benefit small animals and useful insects like bees. Creating this type of oasis for small wildlife is a multifaceted and fun project that can include finding and planting native plants, spreading out feeders, and allowing your garden to grow. It also involves embracing organic growing principles to eliminate toxins like many commercial pesticides and fertilizers (which can harm birds).
Greater Life Satisfaction
Gardening is a popular activity in the UK, where it is practised by millions. Some of the many amazing benefits it confers include lower stress levels and greater motivation. Gardening is also an ideal activity to boost positivity and overall life satisfaction. The activity also has important physical benefits, with studies showing that it can improve heart health.