Gardening is a great activity, encouraging you to spend time outside, grounding you and helping you to connect with nature. What’s more, studies have shown that gardening is beneficial to your health in several ways. From boosting mental health to facilitating healthy eating habits, gardening is a great activity for people of any age.
What’s more, if you want to bring a little magic to your gardening adventures, plant a hedge wall and pretend you’re in The Secret Garden. You never know what pleasures await you there.
Mulch And Mental Health
Getting outside in nature has gained such a powerful reputation for benefiting mental health, that the field of horticulture therapy is rapidly gaining adherents. This unique form of therapy encourages gardeners to work with a wide array of plants, including flowers, fruits and vegetables, and herbs. These different varieties stimulate the senses and many who engage in this form of therapy find that gardening offers a great sense of self satisfaction. After some time outside, moods lift and those engaged feel they have accomplished something meaningful.
Gardening outdoors also helps your body to absorb more vitamin D from the sun. Vitamin D is necessary for mood balance, which is why doctors often encourage those with depression to spend more time outside or to use sun lamps during the winter months. Without enough vitamin D, the body is increasingly prone to depression.
Planting food-bearing plants in your garden is a great way to boost your physical health because of the ready availability of nutritious food options, and all the better if your garden is organic.
Adults aren’t the only ones who can benefit from growing food-bearing plants. Research has shown that children who garden are more likely to try new vegetables that they’ve grown because they have a connection to the process of bringing these foods into being. If you’re struggling with your child over vegetables, this can be a great way to encourage food exploration.
Buds And Brains
Mental decline is a major concern for many older adults, especially those with family histories of Alzheimer’s and dementia. Gardening can actually help to reduce the likelihood that you’ll develop dementia. The risk reduction was significant, coming in at a 36% reduction among adults in their 60s and 70s, even when other factors were controlled for.
Roots And Recovery
If you know that you’re going to undergo surgery soon, consider starting a garden before you go under the knife. When you enter the recovery phase, returning to your garden can help to speed the recovery process and reduce pain levels. This is also true for those suffering from chronic pain. The increased movement and flexibility required for gardening helps to build strength and also aid in weight loss and overall fitness. While gardening may not seem like aerobic exercise, it still takes a lot of effort.
Gardening is a great activity and with the right preparation it can be done year round. Your body – especially your stomach – will thank you for taking up this broadly beneficial hobby.