Here’s the latest health-boosting suggestion from scientists: Get plenty of Vitamin G! As in “G” for Gardening. Because a study of over 6,000 people by the University of Virginia found that frequent gardening has tons of health benefits.
For example, 30 minutes of gardening can burn as many calories as playing badminton or volleyball, or doing yoga. But it doesn’t feel as strenuous as going to the gym, even though it takes similar amounts of energy. But the perception that it’s easier than say, playing volleyball, means people who frequently garden also get more physical activity in general. Because they don’t feel like they expended all their energy gardening.
And that boost in activity correlates to better mobility! Research from UC San Diego found that older folks who spent the most time gardening were 40% less likely to experience a loss of mobility over the course of the study.
And a study by the UK’s Royal Horticultural Society found adding just a few plants to a windowsill or a bare patch of dirt can make people feel happier and more relaxed… and has the same impact as having daily mindfulness sessions!