"How Gardening Enriches Mental and Physical Well-being"

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If you are struggling with severe depression, anxiety, or any form of mental illness, gardening can be a helpful solution. There is more than meets the eye what it has to offer. By engaging in environmentally friendly activities, you can improve your physical and mental health through green therapy. In schools, teachers teach that planting gardens provides opportunities for young people to improve their well-being, including social, physical, cognitive, psychological, environmental, and spiritual sides.

The positive effects of gardening on mental health

Nowadays people going through lots of mental suffering due to depression, frustration, and stress from work or family it is slowly destroying their lives. Sometimes, doctors also recommend engaging in positive and creative activities such as gardening. Because it provides relief from psychological problems, shifting the mind to healing, effortless attention, something beautiful that offers comfort and joy.

Gardening and having plants offer numerous psychological benefits which are given below,

1. Sense of Achievement— Watching plants grow and flourish as a result of your hard work can boost self-esteem and provide a sense of achievement. It can be particularly rewarding to harvest your fruits, vegetables, or flowers. A sense of pride boosts when a plant grows well after your effort.

2. Stress, depression, and anxiety reduction— Gardening has been shown to elevate mood and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Spending time outdoors, especially in natural settings, has a calming effect on the mind.

3. Attention deficit recovery— Experts suggest that spending time in fresh air can aid in preventing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and potentially improve test scores for students. Gardening, which involves a great deal of attention and hard work, is a perfect way to connect with nature and potentially alleviate ADHD symptoms. These findings were detailed in a paper published in Biological Psychiatry.

4. Reduction of PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder) — Gardening can improve focus, attention, and memory, which are often affected by PTSD and trauma. Direct exposure to nature can alleviate symptoms of PTSD, including an exaggerated startle response.

5. Increased creativity, problem-solving, and consciousness— Your memory begins to improve when you become more imaginative, you can get creative with your garden displays by adding color, texture, and decorative features. Being surrounded by houseplants helps us to think freely and be more comfortable.

6. Reduced effects of dementia— Gardening has multiple benefits for people with dementia, such as enhancing memory, attention, social interaction, reducing stress, and promoting relaxation.

7. Cognitive benefits— Gardening can have a positive influence on cognitive function and memory. The process of planning, organizing a garden, researching different plant species, and troubleshooting garden issues can all contribute to improved cognitive condition.

8. Lesser screen time— People are too focused on their phones, leaving little time for positive activities. Excessive screen time can have an impact on neurological disorders. Reducing screen time and engaging in activities like gardening can enhance your health and wellness. It can also help you overcome bad habits and offer an enjoyable hobby to indulge in.

The positive effects of gardening on physical health

Digging up the dirt, planting, weeding, and watering benefits you physically in the long run. Exposure to and use of green spaces has long-term health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer, osteoporosis, stroke, and obesity. Here are the benefits of engaging in green activities,

1. Increased physical exercise— It includes all kinds of physical activities like squats and lunges while weeding, lifting, and trimming various things can improve your overall fitness levels, too.

2. Vitamin D-producing— Gardening outdoors in sunlight helps produce essential vitamin D for bone health. (TIP- You should still apply sunscreen if you're planning on spending more than a few minutes in the sun to lower your risk of skin cancer.)

3. Healthy diet— Taking the time to grow and consume your fruits and vegetables can have a beneficial effect on your overall health. Gardeners are more likely to include vegetables as part of healthy, well-balanced diets, resulting in a well-rounded and nutritious meal plan. Also, freshly harvested produce generally contains more nutrients than those found in grocery stores.

4. Improved sleep— After a day of gardening, physical activity, and hard work can improve sleep patterns, which are crucial for overall health.

5. Burns calories— A busy day in the garden can be a good form of workout. In our study, we discovered that spending only 30 minutes in the garden can result in burning up to 300 calories.

6. Happy hormones– The act of gardening can naturally increase serotonin levels in the body, which is known as the "happy hormone."

7. Lower blood pressure— According to most doctors, engaging in 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity can effectively decrease blood pressure and enhance heart health. Interestingly, spending 30-45 minutes engaging in gardening or yard work can also produce similar results. In addition, gardening can contribute to better cardiovascular health by providing exposure to nature.

8. Build social connectivity— Gardening with a community can foster social growth through shared interests and goals. Being part of a larger group can benefit your mental health by increasing your social connections and your support system.

------ Gardening has emerged in recent years as a scientifically proven stress reliever. One thing to keep in mind, sometimes mistakes happen when you are gardening not every plant will grow exactly how you want or expect. Every gardener faces problems like this, Just learn from your mistakes and don’t let it keep you from continuing to garden.