Being friends with Rozanne is about more than good times and quiet moments together; spending time with her can actually improve your health! Not that you needed any excuses to head out to the garden for some one-on-one time with Rozanne, but here are some ways you can reap the health benefits of gardening with Rozanne and her garden friends.
Here’s why gardening is healthy:
Gardening is Good Exercise
Spending an afternoon caring for Rozanne and the rest of her lot counts as low-to-moderate-intensity exercise. Unlike walking or biking, which focus on your lower body, gardening is an exercise which incorporates your entire body, including your arms. People who garden will actually spend an average of 40-50 minutes longer at the activity than those who choose another form of exercise. And who can blame them? Wouldn’t you rather spend an afternoon tending to friends than a torturous hour on a treadmill?
Since Rozanne will tolerate the summer heat, you and she can soak up some summer sunshine together. Exposing your arms, legs, and face to the rays of the sun will increase your body’s levels of vitamin D, the “Sunshine Vitamin.” Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that supports your immune system, is needed for healthy bones, and supports a good mood. Even 15 minutes of sun exposure can have incredible benefits, so you and Rozanne can move to some partial shade if it gets too hot.
Gardening Relieves Stress
The rhythm of repetitive tasks can help us unwind and relax from the multi-tasking of our busy days. Stress can have a negative impact on our physical and mental health, so measures that manage that stress can have tremendous benefits. To fully release your stress while gardening, apply mindfulness to your activity. Be aware of the sights, sounds, smells, and feel of the things around you. Paired with the rhythm of repetitive movements, this mindful awareness becomes a meditation – an activity that is proven to reduce stress and boost health.
Gardening Improves Mental & Cognitive Health
It is not just the scintillating stories that Rozanne has to share that keeps you alert around her; the act of gardening can improve your mood and support cognitive health. Studies have linked gardening with a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease. The mood boosting effects of adequate vitamin D can help ward off depression, and the stress relieving properties of gardening can also improve mood. Lastly, regular exercise has been shown to enhance the area of the brain used for verbal memory and learning. Time in the garden is a smart idea.
Gardening is Healing
The best part of gardening is connecting with Nature – she is tranquil and healing. Even the most novice gardener knows there is something magical about being out in the sun, with a soft breeze whispering against your skin and warm dirt under your hands. Gardening connects you with Nature like no other activity.
Make time today to connect with Rozanne and her friends in your garden. You don’t have to feel selfish about the incredible benefits that you will receive from your interaction; afterall, Rozanne gets something back from spending time with you, too.