August 18, 2006

Ha! I knew it!

Prevention MagazineLeafing through the current issue of Prevention magazine, I was scanning the 25 points in their anti-aging article. #4 was "get a pet."

"Harumph," thought I, rather petulantly. "What about 'get a garden?' That should easily be just as good as getting a pet." Even as I grumbled to myself, I turned the page and there it was: Number 8.

8. Stop and plant the roses
Gardening or being around plants bears fruit. In one study, blood pressure jumped in workers given a stressful task--but rose only a quarter as much if there were plants in the room. And patients who had a view of trees as they recovered from surgery left the hospital almost a day sooner than those with a view of a brick wall.

It doesn't get much more official than that.

But we knew it all along, didn't we? Still, I'm willing to bet they would have found even more benefits from actually DOING the gardening, not just being around plants.

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2 comments:

ehlikeyif said...

I am a full time physiatrist..and gardener from Turkey/Istanbul.. a few years ago..thinking that rehab patients would like to take care of plants ( believing everybody was like me=( )..I prepared window boxes for each room.. for them..to take care..water and so.. no one cared..nor the patients..or their visitors.. but we did..they are flourishing with perennials..
well it was a therapy for us.. but maybe having plants around made them feel better .. indirect effect..happy me..

Janet said...

Ehlikeyif, how long are the patients in rehab? They probably don't feel like the plants really belong to them, but I'm sure they benefit from having them there anyway, both because of their beauty and because of happier caregivers. ;o) There are many hospitals and nursing homes in Canada setting up gardens as part of patient care, but I believe it's only in the nursing homes that the residents get involved in the care of the plants. Probably because they live there and can form a real connection with their own little planter or plot.

By the way, I spent a week in Istanbul as a guest of a family thirty years ago. Quite a culture shock for a Canadian teenager! Watching Captain Kirk speaking Turkish made me giggle...