Monday, 20 October 2014

President's Message - October 2014

I wonder if we sometimes take the health benefits of gardening a little bit for granted.  I know we all garden for different reasons, but for each and every one of us, gardening can have a positive impact on our physical, mental and emotional well-being.

Gardening provides us with a work-out for our respiratory and cardiovascular systems and can improve strength, endurance and flexibility, as well as helping to prevent problems such as heart disease, diabetes, obesity and osteoporosis.  Isn’t it great that we don’t have to pump iron or compete in triathlons – just doing something simple in our garden is a great way to get some useful, healthy physical exercise.

Gardening activity also releases endorphins, which work to alleviate stress, and studies have shown that simply spending time in a garden can help lower blood pressure, stimulate the appetite and foster a good night's sleep.

And beyond the physical benefits, there are many other health benefits to gardening:

  • Gardening can help with the development of social and intellectual skills, including those needed for social inclusion or rehabilitation. 
  • A garden can provide an oasis of calm and somewhere peaceful to escape to, helping restore a sense of balance and wellbeing.
  • A healthier diet can be a by-product of gardening - if you put the effort into growing fruit, herbs and vegetables you are more likely to reap the rewards and eat them.

So the next time you’re out in your garden, why not take a minute to think about how much all that hard work you’re doing produces not just a lovely garden, but also a healthier and happier you.  

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