The detrimental effects of coronavirus is affecting the livelihood, career, education, and overall lifestyle of numerous people worldwide. Failing to cope up with the pandemic consequences, many people are experiencing stress and anxiety which may drive them into chronic depression. You may know that the immune system of a human body gets weaken due to fear, stress, anxiety, and depression. To get rid of stress and alleviate health status, you can opt for creative ways like rooftop gardening. Read this article to know how rooftop gardening can help in stress release and health improvement.
What Stress Does to Human Body?
The human body is designed with a complex natural alarming system. When you come across any perceived threat like facing a violent dog or falling down from the staircase, your brain instigates the release of hormones including Adrenaline and Cortisol.
The release of Adrenaline hormone in the human body tends to fasten the heart rate, increase blood pressure, and boost up energy supplies. And, the primary stress hormone Cortisol increases blood sugars (glucose), activates the brain in using glucose, and promotes repairing tissues. This hormone alters the immune system to suppress the digestive system while communicating with the brain to control the fear.
Usually, the stress-response system of the human body is self-limiting. Once the threat has passed, the stress-hormone levels go down. Then your heart rate and blood pressure return to normal and different organs including the digestive system resume their usual activities. What if, you are undergoing stress constantly?
When you regularly feel anxiety, the stress-response system of your body stays alert for the long-term. It may lead to excess release of cortisol and other stress hormones that can cause diverse health problems including anxiety, chronic Sleeplessness (Insomnia), digestive problems, headaches, heart disease, depression, memory loss, concentration problems, obesity, etc.
How Rooftop Gardening Can Release Your Stress and Promote Health?
Rooftop gardening will not cost you much money. The only thing you need to invest is your time, focus, and creativity. Let's see what gardening can do to your mind and body.
Encourages Own Creativity
When you get engaged in any creative activity, your level of cortisol (stress hormone) reduces within 45 minutes. However, you do not need to be a pro in any specific skill. All you need to do is to hold the willpower for waking up the hidden artist inside you.
Rooftop gardening can be a great way to dig up your creativity. Gardening can give you a purpose for living when you are lonely and suffering from depression. If you have a small place on your roof or balcony you can plant some seeds and do some research about gardening. You can take suggestions from diverse online groups.
When you can finally observe the growth of healthy plants it will give you the heavenly pleasure of your own creation which belongs to you. If you can spend some hours in the garden every day, you can gain mental peace and avoid stress which will strengthen your immunity in the long term.
Improves Mindfulness or Focus
Mindfulness is a scientifically proven way to combat stress and anxiety. When you focus on a special activity like gardening with all your mind and heart, it keeps you away from anxiety for at least some hours. When you spend time in your garden, you allow yourself come to close to nature. It is said that nature is the best healer.
Getting close to nature, you can enjoy priceless moments, like feeling sun-shine over your face, getting enthralled by the beauty and smell of blooming flowers, listening to the chirping of birds, enjoying your own creativity of growing vegetables or flowers, etc. These simple but peaceful moments can not only give you immense happiness but also prevent your brain from getting overwhelmed by tensions of daily life. Thus, you can fight anxiety and improve your mental health.
Exposure to Sunlight
During the ongoing pandemic situation, the health-experts are advising people to stay at home. However, if you get deprived of enough sunlight for a long time, your body misses the natural source of Vitamin D. You may know that unlike other vitamins, Vitamin D is created through a chemical reaction in the human body when the sun rays bounce off the skin.
Vitamin D promotes calcium storage in the human body, which strengthens the bones and teeth, boosts up the immune system, controls the flow of insulin throughout the bloodstream, and minimizes the risk of diverse diseases like diabetes, heart problems, lungs issues, and even cancer. What is more? Vitamin D can make you feel-good from internally, which assists in releasing stress, fear, anxiety, as well as depression.
When you do rooftop gardening or sit on a bench under the open sky for sometimes, your body gets exposure to natural sunlight and generates Vitamin D. Most importantly, while you enjoy free sunshine in your rooftop garden, you do not need to get worried about maintaining social-distancing and getting contracted by COVID disease.
More Physical Activity
While the pandemic consequences have confined many people at home, regular physical activities have been minimized which have enhanced the risk of obesity, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, etc.
The act of gardening would require you some amount of physical movements that can strengthen different parts of your body. For instance, when you get down on hands or knees while digging into the soil, your joints become supple, back gets stronger, and fingers get nimbler.
These physical activities can reduce the risk of arthritis and associated diseases in later life. Furthermore, while you are working in a garden, your heart rate increases. Thus, gardening labor can compensate for the health-benefit of jogging or pedaling bikes. What is more? Moderate physical activities like gardening can help the senior citizens in improving their body-balance, which may prevent them from accidental falling down.
Growing Own food
The biggest benefit of growing vegetables in your own garden is that you know the source of your food. The assurance that no potentially harmful preservatives have been applied to your food, would give you immense mental satisfaction. However, you can buy expensive organic vegetables from the supermarket but it may cost you excess grocery-budget at the month-end. Just think! Why pay somebody else to grow your food, when you could do it yourself enjoying bonus health benefits?
Exposure to Bacteria
While you spend time outdoors, you are somewhat exposed to diverse diseases and health problems. However, with a little caution, you can avoid such risks. Though you may have been learned many drawbacks of getting hands dirty, it also has some underrated benefits. For instance, when you touch soils, it gets under your fingernails, and you expose yourself to bacteria. Scientists have found that certain types of bacteria called 'commensal bacteria' aid in digestion and boost up the immunity system of the human body.
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