If you are still hesitant to buy a weed from your local supermarket, because on the one hand you will have something to keep you sane while staying at home; and on the other hand, you are too lazy to grow one; learning more about the benefits of keeping plants nearby might be reason enough to finally put it in your cart and check it out. Here are six proven health benefits of gardening:
- Improve your brain health
Since it requires the use of your cognitive functions, research shows that gardening is effective in keeping your mind sharp. Not only does it help improve your memory, tending to your plants for even a few hours a day will reduce your risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
2. Makes you active and stay fit
The author of the book, Fitness the Dynamic Gardening Way, Jeff Restuccio, told WebMD that you can turn your gardening into a structured exercise routine. So if you miss going to the gym due to the pandemic, growing vegetables in your garden is a perfect alternative to your workouts since three hours of gardening equals one hour of gym session. Also, you don’t need to pay any membership fees. It’s a win-win for your body and your wallet!
3. Healthier food
By growing your own food, you will find yourself more in control of what you put into your body. Freshly picked fruits, vegetables and herbs contain more nutrients than what you normally buy at the store. On top of that, growing your plants sustainably will make your produce richer and more delicious, making it easier to incorporate more greens into your diet.
4. Relieves stress
The relaxing nature of gardening activities is in itself a stress reliever. Studies have further proven that caring for plants daily can reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Not only that, sun exposure causes your body to produce vitamin D, and in turn, vitamin D produces serotonin, which is a brain chemical that makes you happy!
5. Better sleep
Doing physical activities like gardening won’t just tire you out at the end of the day. Thanks to the light therapy emitted by the sun, you will also have enough melatonin to help you sleep well at night and realign your sleep patterns for an energized morning the next day.
Your indoor plants are also an important factor for a good night’s sleep. Plants with air-purifying properties can remove air particles and remove harmful chemicals, leaving you with excellent air quality while you sleep.
6. Improve immunity
Being exposed to a sufficient amount of “the sunshine vitamin” also keeps your bones, teeth and muscles healthy, not to mention it boosts your immune system; while the dirt in your garden harbors a good bacteria called Mycobacterium vaccae, a “friendly” soil bacteria that also helps boost your immunity.
Although it’s something we don’t always consider doing, participating in gardening activities is beneficial to our overall health, whether physical or mental. That’s why buying that long-coveted basil plant is a great start.
And, what better way to start your journey in horticulture than to use recyclable materials to help with environmental sustainability efforts. Fortunately, thanks to initiatives such as ARC Refreshments Corp’s “Grow as One” campaign which promotes sustainable urban gardening, we have support for creating our own garden, no matter how small. The “Grow as One” campaign shows the resilience of business in the face of the new normal. Through this campaign, the employee-led project called “My Gulay Garden” was launched. It aims to encourage the community to recycle RC Cola PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles as containers to grow their plants.
Considering the short and long-term positive impact gardening has on our health, it’s only natural that the environment receives the same. For why do we need good health, if the earth, the very house in which we live, dies. So be careful when growing your fruits, vegetables or herbs. Reduce. Reuse. And recycle those PET bottles.