Can you tell by the above photo that I love to be in the garden? For me, the number one benefit of gardening is stress reduction. My blood pressure physically lowers every garden season. My doctors have documented it. Lower stress means a healthier lifestyle and a longer life. Gardening makes me smile and now others are beginning to agree.
A recently completed survey by W. Atlee Burpee & Co. on the perceived benefits of gardening reveals that a whopping 87 percent of respondents said gardening helps them better manage stress. Additionally, many of the respondents are utilizing a garden to help them with 2010 resolutions and lifestyle changes. Here are their hopeful responses for how a garden might improve their lives in 2010 – Getting More Exercise (56 percent), Saving Money (42 percent), Reducing Stress (43 percent), Being Environmentally Responsible (39 percent), Spending More time with Family (37 percent), Making Healthier Food Choices (43 percent).
Reduction of stress in our lives should be a goal we all share. Stress can kill and offers a tremendous detriment to an individual’s emotional health. It costs Americans billions of dollars. According to the American Psychological Association:
- Workplace stress causes approximately one million U.S. employees to miss work each day and nearly two-thirds of all office visits to family physicians are due to stress-related symptoms.
- Stress causes American industry more than $300 billion annually in lost hours due to absenteeism, reduced productivity and workers compensation benefits.More than one in four workers have taken a “mental health day” off from work to cope with stress.
- In 1999 alone, anxiety-related disorders cost the U.S. $42 billion a year in work-related medical losses.
- 43 percent of all adults suffer adverse health effects from stress.
Plan to get in the garden and make a difference for your emotional health as well as your physical health in 2010 – live less stressed and be happier!
Shawna Coronado says Get Healthy! Get Green! Get Community!