Health Benefits Numerous studies have shown that regular physical activity reduces your risk of premature death, heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, adult-onset diabetes, osteoporosis, stroke, depression, and colon cancer. Gardening and yard work contributes to healthy active living, and are part of all three types of physical activity - endurance, flexibility, and strength activities. Heavy yard work like raking and carrying leaves contributes to both endurance and strengthening activities, while all those stretches and contortions in the garden can help increase and maintain your flexibility.
Fact: From Field to Table
Studies reveal that gardeners consume most kinds of vegetables more frequently than do non-gardeners.
And the benefits are not all in the body; they're also in the mind! There's a whole field of practice called horticultural therapy, which explores the way that gardening helps people heal, physically and emotionally. Horticultural therapists have discovered that gardening provides a form of emotional expression and release, and it helps people to connect with others. The psychological benefits of being outdoors, working in the sunshine and fresh air, are also clear.
Indeed, studies have shown that just looking at trees and plants reduces stress, lowers blood pressure and relieves tension in muscles.
Given all this, is it any surprise that one study concludes: "Those who are involved in gardening find life more satisfying and feel they have more positive things happening in their lives." Now that's a healthy attitude...in the garden, as in life!