Gardening is an activity that many people enjoy, but did you know that it can be good for your brain and body too?
Gardening has been found to have positive effects on human health, according to a meta-analysis of 22 studies comprising 76 comparisons between control and treatment groups. The studies showed that gardening reduces depression, anxiety, and body mass index, while increasing life satisfaction, quality of life, and sense of community. Despite the presence of publication bias, the study provides robust evidence for the positive effects of gardening on human health.
A recent study conducted in South Korea found that gardening for 20 minutes can improve cognitive function in seniors as it increases the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor and platelet-derived growth factor related to memory. The study suggests that gardening could be a worthwhile and enjoyable activity for seniors to enhance their overall well-being.
So, whether you have a green thumb or are just starting out, here are some reasons why gardening is a great activity for both your physical and mental health.
1. Reduces Stress
Gardening is a great way to reduce stress levels. When you spend time in nature and work with plants, you can lower your cortisol levels, which is the hormone responsible for stress. Gardening also provides a sense of accomplishment and can boost your mood.
2. Improves Brain Health
Gardening can improve brain health in several ways. First, it can help to improve memory and cognitive function. According to a study, the physical activity involved in gardening can also increase blood flow to the brain, which can help to improve brain function.
3. Provides Exercise
Gardening is a physical activity that provides a good workout. According to research in the international journal of environmental research and public health, It can help to increase your strength, flexibility, and endurance. Gardening involves digging, planting, weeding, and carrying bags of soil or compost, all of which can be great exercise.
4. Helps with Nutrition
Gardening can also help to improve your nutrition. When you grow your own fruits and vegetables, you have control over what goes into them. You can ensure that your produce is organic and free from harmful pesticides or chemicals. Plus, freshly harvested produce is often more nutrient-dense than store-bought produce that may have been sitting on shelves for days or weeks.
5. Connects You to Nature
Gardening is a great way to connect with nature. It allows you to spend time outdoors and appreciate the beauty of plants and flowers. When you connect with nature, you can reduce feelings of depression and anxiety.
6. Teaches Patience and Persistence
Gardening is not a quick fix. It requires patience and persistence. You have to wait for plants to grow, and sometimes they may not grow at all. Gardening teaches you to be patient and to keep trying even when things don't go as planned.
7. Provides a Sense of Community
Gardening can also provide a sense of community. When you join a community garden, you can connect with other gardeners and share tips and advice. It can be a great way to meet new people and make friends.
It is important for physicians to encourage patients to engage in physical activity and spend time in green spaces, parks, and gardens. This can improve physical health and mental well-being, and patients can be referred to community resources for further support.
Physicians can also play a role in promoting the development of gardens in various settings. Hospitals, hospices, schools, and prisons can benefit from having gardens, which can improve the overall well-being of patients and staff members. In addition, healthcare professionals can advocate for the inclusion of views of outside nature in the design of health service buildings and promote the teaching of gardening skills in schools.
In conclusion, we are here to help you before starting any new gardening activity. We can also provide guidance on the best way to go about gardening so you can avoid potential risks or injuries. So, contact us today and start enjoying the benefits of gardening.
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