Study finds that gardening may reduce the risk of illnesses and mental health issues

Study finds that gardening may reduce the risk of illnesses and mental health issues

Lifestyle choices are often one of the main factors contributing to a number of chronic and non-communicable illnesses. A recent research, however, found that taking part in nature-based community interventions might reduce the risk of adult-onset illnesses including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.

A research from the University of Colorado discovered that gardening had a significant positive effect on one's general health. The study was published in the journal Lancet Planetary Health. The results of a study funded by the American Cancer Society demonstrated the significance of community gardening in reducing mental health issues and chronic illnesses.

These results provide tangible evidence that community gardening could play a significant role in preventing cancer, chronic diseases, and mental health disorders, according to senior author Jill Litt, an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

The team conducted this research in 37 community gardens in Denver and Aurora, Colorado, US, even though they are still investigating community gardening as a viable health intervention in metropolitan areas. Two groups of the 291 participants were created. One group was given the task of gardening, and was given a garden plot, seeds, seedlings, and a gardening orientation course.

The study's authors discovered that gardeners ingested 1.4 grams more fiber per day than the control group and ate more fruits and vegetables than their peers. Due to their participation in moderate to strenuous physical activity throughout the research period, they were also somewhat more active. Even when compared to the non-gardening group, the gardeners showed lower indicators of stress and anxiety.

The researchers came to the conclusion that, despite the advantages being modest, simple adjustments, such as gardening, could be a method to lower the risk of developing chronic illnesses. That risk is increased by smoking, having a bad diet, and living a sedentary lifestyle.