Gardening is one of the oldest discoveries for humans. Yet more people keep turning back to gardening. Some even claim they see health benefits. So the question is, are there any health benefits to gardening?
Gardening isn’t a new invention, but we are discovering new health benefits that come with gardening every day. A study showed that during the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic, a rise in gardening was happening. There are many reasons this could’ve happened, but some of the main reasons are people wanted to get closer to nature, relieve stress, and some just wanted a self-sustainable food source. Here are some unexpected health benefits you should consider while gardening.
Improved Diet and Exercise
One of the most overlooked benefits of gardening is significantly improving your diet and exercise. Tending a garden requires a lot of physicalities and can be quite the full-body workout. Carrying bags of mulch and other garden tools can be great exercise. Gardening can improve your strength, balance, and flexibility. There are always modifications that you can implement if you struggle with pain. For instance, if you struggle with back pain, implement a raised bed so you won’t have to bend over as much.
When it comes to planting and eating, you’ll want to enjoy the fruits of your labor. (literally) Certain vegetables like corn and potatoes can be grown year around so that you and your whole family can enjoy them. Different fruits and vegetables have different micronutrients that are beneficial to the body. For example, sweet potatoes are high in beta-carotene, which has anti-aging properties. There is a multitude of benefits in just eating what your plant.
Time in Nature
Getting outdoors is a great way to relax and helps improve mental and physical health. When outside, we tend to breathe deeper, which leads to us clearing out our lungs while also improving immune health, and it also helps in digestion. Outside also exposes our body to the sun, which allows us to absorb more vitamin D, strengthening our bones and immune system.
Reduced Stress levels
Every single form of exercise has been proven to reduce stress. Gardening imparticular, has been shown to lighten the mood and lower stress and anxiety levels. Routines help in relieving a sense of stress in our day to day. Pulling weeds up and watering our plants is just one of the ways that we can benefit from adding a stress-free routine in our life.
Gardening has also been proven to make you happier by boosting your self-esteem. This may have something to do with how it changes your outlook on life. By growing something, you get to watch something grow into something that will sustain you in the future.
Improves Mental Wellbeing
There has been controversy if gardening alone can be a good exercise. But, a study in Korea showed that gardening stimulated growth in memory-related brain nerves. Multiple studies have shown that gardening, in particular, is an excellent exercise for people with dementia to participate in.
So while gardening has been shown to improve your mental well-being on a neurological level, there have also been significant boosts in mood. It’s been reported that those who suffer from depression and anxiety have shown a significant reduction in their symptoms after 12 weeks of gardening.
Gardening is a great way to get outside and enjoy the beauty of nature while also reaping a ton of health benefits.
If you’re ready and able to get down and dirty with pushing and pulling, not only will your garden benefit but also your heart, bones, and mind. It doesn’t matter if your garden is small or big. Gardening has been proven to have many benefits.
Susceptibility to Insects and Moisture
Wood decking, even after being treated, is always vulnerable to damage from insects such as termites and rot from excessive exposure to water. Sealing the deck helps protect it from water, but that adds to maintenance costs and time. Composite decking, on the other hand, is not vulnerable to insects and moisture. If you live in Arizona, moisture damage may not be much of a concern, but here in North Carolina, it’s something you have to consider.
For the majority of decks that have straight planks, both composite and wood work just as well. However, if you are looking at curved decking, you’ll need composite because you can’t bend wood decking.