The economic news continues to affect our lifes and make us all feel pretty miserable. Fuel prices have been at an all-time high, food prices are up & house prices are still struggling. It is proven that in times of hardship we stay closer to home and question what we should be doing with our past time and where we can make valuable savings. Gardening can help so let me tell you more.
Mention the word ‘fitness’ and most think immediately of the gym. Spending hours pumping iron does not appeal to everyone. So think of the gym as being closer to home – in fact in your very own garden. You may even save money for those that currently pay for gym memberships and classes.
“You can reap almost the same health benefits from gardening as you would from a workout in the gym, and it isn’t just your body that gets healthier after gardening. Your mind and emotions has also been proven to be boosted,” says BUPA.
Gardening, like other forms of moderate exercise, can help to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels if you do it for around 30 minutes per day. Exercise such as gardening has even been found to help prevent type II diabetes, heart disease and strokes.
There are so many benefits of gardening and here are just a few:
The power of sunlight
Sunlight helps the body to make vitamin D, which is essential for healthy bones and may slow the progression of osteoporosis. Positive powers of sunlight also work on the mind.
The most energetic activities in terms of calories used are digging and shovelling. If you spend 30 minutes on either of these activities, you could burn up between 200 and 360 calories. Mowing the lawn is also a high-calorie burner
Staying mentally alert
“Gardening takes you on a unique journey of discovery. It gives you an opportunity to exercise your mind and your hands, and there’s always something new to learn from your garden. Learning new skills is a sure-fire way to keep the brain alert,” says BUPA’s Dr Sally Cubbin.
Reducing stress levels
Researchers at the University of Florida have found that just walking through a beautiful sensory garden lowers stress levels. “The sensory garden is thought to have the same effects on the mind as art therapy. But it isn’t just doing some gardening that reduces the stress. Soaking up the colours, sounds and smells of your garden and taking time to appreciate the peace and tranquillity also help to remove tension,”
For further information about the health benefits of gardening, advice on getting fit for gardening, and further tips on gardening safely, log on to BUPA’s website www.bupa.co.uk
For you and your whole family
Not only is it great exercise but it is something that the whole family can be involved in and at the same time you have great fun, fresh air and learning at the same time!
Selling your home
Don’t forget that time and money is not wasted in a garden. When the time comes to wanting to sell your home again your garden will look appealing to so many who come for viewings it may just be the icing on the cake for selling it. It is proven that investing money in the home and garden (if done wisely) is not lost as this money spent can often be added to cost sale of the house.
From the garden to the table, growing your own food can reduce your bills!
Growing a simple vegetable garden can save hundreds of pounds in food costs. For example, consider lettuce. You can pay £1.60 for an organic loose-leaf lettuce in the grocery store, or you can spend that same amount of money to buy a packet of seeds that can yield hundreds of heads of lettuce! Obviously, you won't be able to eat all the lettuce at once, but it illustrates the point that investing in your edible garden around the home can reap dividends for the wallet.
Not only can you make savings this way but also there are benefits to be made. You will save air miles as much of your fruit and vegetables you buy come from abroad. You will know where it comes from…right outside your door! You will always have it on hand so you don’t have to make regular trips using fuel to your local supermarket.
We now have dedicated areas within our stores for ‘From the Garden to the Table. You don’t have to have rolling acres or have to build a vegetable plot – you can grow plenty on a small patio & outside your kitchen window and even grow some vegetables within planted borders. We have plenty of vegetable patio planters, seeds, seed and plant growing kits and small plants ready to grow on.
Try and find a place for a water butt; they are definitely worth it, especially if you are on a water metre or end up with a dry season hose ban in your area.Compost bins are also worthwhile investing in. They can save on fuel, as you don’t have to make regular trips to the landfill sites to dispose of it. You also end up with something useful at the end, an ideal mulch/fertilizer for the garden.