Gardening: Good for the Body and the Mind

(This guest post is authored by Kate E. Jerman of Get Outdoors Colorado)

Photo from Nutrition You Can Trust Pinterest board

Spring is in the air and it is the perfect time to start thinking about growing a garden or shopping at local farmers markets for fresh grown goodness! Get Outdoors Colorado is here to give you some tips on why getting your hands dirty is beneficial for your health.  Besides providing you and your family with tasty, healthy, locally-grown produce, gardening has other health benefits as well!  Gardening can provide stress relief, improve brain and mental health, and is a terrific form of mild exercise. Recent studies show that people who participate in gardening are less likely to be stressed and report better moods.  Scientists at CU Boulder also suggest that it is good for you to stick your hands in the dirt because the harmless bacteria found in soil may actually have uplifting effects on serotonin levels in the brain. Increased serotonin levels combined with the benefits of low-impact exercise means a happy and healthy gardener!
Researchershave found that gardening also has the ability to lower the risk of developing dementia. These findings are not definitive, but it is safe to say that gardening is a fun and productive activity that has the potential to sprout lasting impacts on health, relaxation, and stress reduction – not to mention putting tasty home-grown treats on your table!  Get inspired to get started in your own backyard by visiting local organizations such as Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver Urban Gardens, or CSU Extension.

No space to garden? Don’t worry – check out metro Denver’s farmers market scheduleso you know where and when to support local farms and feed your body healthy eats! Visit www.getoutdoorscolorado.orgfor more information on local gardening clinics and activities provided by our partners!