6 Interesting Ways Gardening Can Make You Healthier
Posted on August 02 2019
Reducing our carbon footprint, supporting the pollinator population and encouraging self-sustainability - these are a few ways that gardening benefits the Earth, but there are also a number of ways this eco-friendly hobby can positively impact your health.
Maybe you're feeling under the weather, down in the dumps or your chronic pain got the best of you again. If you're in need of an activity that supports your health in more ways than one, then grab a shovel and head outside because gardening can improve your health in the following ways:
1. Prevents Dementia
The physical activity associated with gardening has shown promising signs of lowering the risk of developing Dementia. One study conducted over a period of 16 years, found that daily gardening was the biggest risk reduction for dementia, lowering its occurrence by 36 percent and in some cases, by 47!
While the factors determining progress and incidence of Dementia are poorly understood, because gardening involves many of our critical functions like endurance, strength, dexterity, learning, problem solving and sensory awareness, it makes sense that exercising these actions supports brain health.
2. Improves Bone Density
Pulling weeds, pushing wheel barrows and digging are all weight bearing motions that help you build strong bones. These movements involve working against gravity which puts pressure on your bones and muscles thereby strengthening them. In the same regard as the saying, "move it or lose it," not challenging your muscles and bones on a regular basis only weakens them.
We can't think of a better way to protect yourself from future bone injuries and foster healthy bone development than by spending time in the garden.
3. Eases Chronic Pain
Gardening can act as rehabilitative therapy for those suffering with chronic pain or injuries. Physical activity can help prevent muscle stiffness and joint inflammation caused by remaining sedentary. But before gardening, you'll want to receive the okay from your physician that you're able to perform gardening tasks without further injuring yourself.
4. Improves Mental Health
The combination of physical activity, awareness of natural surroundings, cognitive stimulation, and the satisfaction of garden work benefit those with a mental illness - most notably depression and anxiety.
Additionally, elevated body temperature from garden work increases feelings of wellbeing which only contributes to the positive impact of gardening and mental health.
5. Boosts Immunity
Being outside in the garden, allows your body to absorb more Vitamin D because of the increased level of exposure to the sun. This simple action can help you fight off colds, the flu and other infections.
Meanwhile the “friendly” bacteria found in garden soil called Mycobacterium Vaccae is known to relieve allergy symptoms, psoriasis and asthma.
6. Improves Relationships and Compassion
Research shows that individuals who spend more time around plants tend to be happier and more compassionate and thus have stronger social relationships than those who don’t.
The increased feelings of compassion one develops when gardening is a result of being exposed to ornamental plants because exposure to nature also increases peoples’ compassion for the environment they live in. They are more likely to try and help and care for others as well and be more empathetic.
Grow With Greenway
If you're looking to start gardening, putting your health first is more than enough reason to begin. When you're ready to get your hands in the dirt, we have the fertilizers you need for happy, healthy plants.
Browse our selection below to learn more.