When we think about the benefits of gardening, we tend to think of only the result of having a beautiful garden or eating our own fruits and vegetables or taking up our time. But in reality, the benefits of gardening are far from being reduced to these 4 benefits!
Gardening is indeed good for us at all levels, whether physical or mental. And no need to have a garden to enjoy these benefits: a few pots of plants on a balcony can be enough.
Here are all the unexpected benefits of gardening. Make you want to buy your own seeds and plants, and start stirring the Earth immediately!
Gardening is good for the Brain
Gardening would not only prevent neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, autism, migraines or depression but also help people who already have them. One branch of Medicine focuses entirely on gardening, using plant cultivation to care for its patients: it is called Hortitherapy.
According to the doctors working in this field, called horticultural therapists, gardening has the advantage of using all our senses and stimulating our memory. You have to remember what plants you have planted in a certain place, how long they have been planted, what their characteristics are and how to care for them, for example.
It is also a never-ending learning process, because each situation is different, depending on the plants you combine, the soil you use, the climate you face or the insects that are nearby. Thus, our brain is constantly stimulated when we are gardening, which is always beneficial.
Gardening is Good for Morale
It is proven and rediscovered: gardening makes you happy in many ways.
First of all, surprising as it may be, the Earth is made up of bacteria that have a high level of serotonin, a hormone called happiness hormone! Thus, stirring the earth around your plants makes you happy, but helps you relax.
Then, since gardening is usually done outdoors, you can enjoy all the benefits of the outdoors. You boost your dose of vitamin D thanks to the sun and you enjoy the fresh air, which provides a great feeling of well-being.
Finally, gardening gives you some personal satisfaction and, at the same time, increases your confidence. How can we not feel proud when we see our plants blossoming or when we can eat a tomato from our vegetable garden? And when you know how difficult it is to maintain certain plants, managing to keep them alive and making them grow is joy without a name!
Gardening makes happy many levels. This is also one of the reasons why horticultural therapists are pushing their patients into gardening, claiming that this activity would allow them to heal more quickly. According to them, their patients share their emotions more when gardening is part of their hobbies.
It is also not without reason that many hospitals have gardens. Even if patients can’t always garden, the simple view of a well-organized garden is relaxing and, according to some studies, also cures faster.
Gardening is Good for Body and Heart
First of all, gardening is a physical activity. And the effort is sometimes much more important than one might think!
Gardening requires a wide variety of physical exercises, from the simplest to the heaviest, which can be compared to other sports exercises. Examples? Watering plants or mowing a lawn helps to tone up the body, raking surface muscles us and cutting a hedge makes us work flexibility and balance, not to mention a lot of other sporting movements such as crouching, digging or carrying a bag of compost. Many muscles are strained by gardening, sometimes without even being noticed.
One hour of gardening is said to be equivalent to 30 minutes of fitness. Gardening several times a week would allow us to stay in shape, and we might even end up losing weight!
But gardening is also good for our heart. This physical activity would help reduce our blood pressure and therefore reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
GARDEN SOIL REDUCES STRESS
I mean, when I’m gardening, all my worries disappear, even if it’s only for a few hours. Gardening has been proven to reduce the stress levels of everyone, including busy mothers and people with post-traumatic stress disorder. So close your mobile device, your computer, and your TV, then go outside and get dirty!
Gardening also helps to reduce stress, eliminate muscle tension and stimulate the immune system. Who would have thought gardening was so good for our health?
Do you like gardening? If you’re not gardening, have these benefits convinced you to do it?