"Gardening can boost your productivity and creativity right away, and may even reduce your risk of developing dementia later in life," Heather Hausenblas writes. U.S. News & World Report gives five reasons getting out in the dirt can improve one's health.
1. You'll boost your mood.
"If you're feeling a little blue, grab your shovel and head to the garden. Gardening has a wide range of mood benefits, such as reductions in depression, anxiety and anger, as well as increases in happiness, according to a study published in Preventive Medicine Reports. And Dutch researchers found that gardening can also fight stress better than other relaxing leisure activities like reading."
TV spots could let Gardeners know about these stress-reducing strategies. The newest AudienceSCAN research revealed 34% of Gardeners took action after seeing commercials in the past month.
2. You may lose weight.
"Gardening burns calories. Both men and women who garden are less likely to be overweight or obese than their non-gardening neighbors and siblings, according to a study from the American Journal of Public Health. In fact, the American Council on Exercise reports that gardening burns about 300 calories an hour. Compare this to fast walking, which burns upwards of 230 calories an hour."
Garden centers can inform customers of the weight-loss benefits of working in the yard through ad campaigns. The latest AudienceSCAN survey found 48% of Gardeners set personal goals to lose weight this year.
3. You'll think better.
"When we're surrounded by plants, we tend to be more productive and creative. Doing so might even have long-term benefits: A daily dose of gardening lowers the risk of dementia by 36 percent, even when a range of other health factors are taken into account, according to a study from the Medical Journal of Australia."
4. You'll be more active.
"Gardening is a great way for people of all ages to get some whole-body exercise. For example, kids in school-based gardening interventions show an increase in time spent in moderate and vigorous physical activity, according to a study published in Preventive Medicine. Digging and raking count as high-intensity physical activities; and tasks such as weeding, mulching, hoeing, harvesting, watering and mixing count as moderate-intensity physical activities, according to research in the American Society for Horticultural Science."
Increasing activity is important to Gardeners. Nurseries can highlight outdoor activities through marketing. The most recent AudienceSCAN study found 58% of Gardeners set personal goals to exercise more this year.
5. You'll eat more fruits and veggies.
"Adults who grow their own produce consume more fruits and veggies, according to research from the American Journal of Public Health. Even kids eat more greens when a garden is implemented in their school, community or after-school setting, based on a review from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Not only is homegrown produce tastier than store-bought produce, it's healthier too since it's grown without fertilizers and preservatives and is richer in nutrients."
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