Organic Gardening as A Stress Reliever
Stress takes a toll on your mind and body. And the longer you are stressed, the worse it gets.
You don't have to be a doctor to recognize the negative effects of stress on your body. It makes you feel anxious and out of control, and over time these feelings can escalate causing negative effects. Even a short period of stress can take its toll, but it’s even more serious the longer it goes on. Chronic stress causes the body to be flooded with hormones which lead to inflammation in the body. Can stress kill? Absolutely!
Negative Effects of Stress:
- Insomnia – stress can cause sleeplessness, restlessness, poor quality sleep, and waking up multiple times during the night. And the less sleep you get, the more stressed you feel.
- Changes in eating habits. Stress can either eliminate your appetite and cause you to eat little to no food, or it can cause you to overeat or binge.
- Long-term stress can lead to anxiety. The symptoms of anxiety include stomach aches, feeling on edge, moodiness, shortness of breath, racing heart, and dizziness, and even full-blown panic attacks.
- Depression can occur after a period of long-term, unchecked stress.
- Long periods of stress can wreak havoc on our immune systems causing you to become more prone to catching colds and other illnesses.
- Stress can aggravate existing health issues such as IBS, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and lupus.
The bottom line is that stress is a serious issue in our fast-paced society and more of us are finding it hard to relax.
So, what does organic gardening have to do with stress? Well, it may surprise you to learn that gardening is a scientifically proven stress reducer. The Journal of Health Psychology published an article which compared gardening to reading. The experiment found that the gardeners experienced a more significant decrease in stress when compared to the readers.
In addition, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has designated gardening a moderate-level intensity activity which uses most of the body. A study they conducted found that people who gardened, exercised on average, 40 to 50 minutes than people who chose biking, walking, or other activities. Regular exercise is one of the things doctors recommend people do when they’re feeling anxious or stressed so this is an additional benefit provided by gardening.
In addition, being outdoors is a natural “high” for many people and their bodies respond by releasing endorphins, the body’s “feel-good” hormones. This feeling of well-being helps reduce stress and leads to improved sleep and overall physical relaxation.
The effects of stress on our lives is enormous. It’s impossible to escape it with all our responsibilities at our jobs, in our family life, and with the stressors we’re exposed to on a daily basis.
And it’s clear that stress takes an enormous toll on our emotional and physical health. That’s why it’s encouraging that gardening can help reduce stress while also providing us with healthy food to assist us on our journey to better health.
So, get out there and get your hands in the dirt and sleep better tonight!
Grab my latest planner, My Organic Gardening Planner and use this digital planner with GoodNotes or print at home and make your own binder.