Gardeners have long touted the hobby as an excellent choice for seniors. It provides fresh air, physical exercise, mental stimulation, and a chance to get out of the house and into nature. Here’s why more seniors should consider gardening.
Increases Physical Activity
Gardening can be an excellent way for seniors to increase their physical activity. It requires bending, kneeling, and lifting—all of which can help build strength and improve balance. Studies have shown that regular physical activity has several other health benefits, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes. Regular exercise can also lower the risk of developing certain types of cancer while helping to regulate weight. Furthermore, working in the garden is low impact, so it’s easy on joints, making it ideal for those with arthritis or any other condition that limits mobility.
Gardening can also provide seniors with a variety of nutritional benefits. Eating fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs grown right in your backyard ensures you consume the freshest food possible. Homegrown produce is often more nutrient-rich than store-bought foods due to its lack of preservatives or additives, which can strip away vital vitamins and minerals. Homegrown produce contains plenty of beneficial vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help protect our bodies against disease. Fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, apples, and oranges contain high amounts of vitamin C, which helps keep skin youthful while promoting strong bones and teeth. And vegetables like kale, spinach, and broccoli contain essential nutrients like fiber, iron, magnesium, calcium, and folate.
Another reason seniors should consider gardening is that it reduces stress. Gardening allows them to focus their energy and attention on something positive while providing an escape from everyday stressors. The simple act of tending to plants or flowers in the garden is therapeutic thanks to its meditative properties, such as concentrating on which tools you need for each task, carefully selecting seeds or bulbs, and watching as nature slowly begins to take shape. This mindful process helps reduce anxiety by creating space for self-reflection and stillness. Spending time in nature can also improve your mood because it provides moments of relaxation that help restore mental balance and clarity. So when feeling overwhelmed, don’t forget about the power of this natural remedy.
Now that you know the reasons that seniors should start gardening, you can take up this hobby today. And if you or a loved one are looking for hospice care in Arizona, check out Soulistic Hospice for our services and facilities.