Gardening and the exercise it involves reduce disease risk factors: study


Gardeners look forward to a season of seed wrapping and planting, careful care, and bountiful harvests. But according to research, another reason for her craving for gardening is improving her health.

A study published in the journal Lancet Planetary Health found that people who participated in community gardening programs consumed more fiber and engaged in more physical activity than those who did not garden. It turns out that there is Both of these factors are associated with better health.

Although there are many studies on gardening, three others tested the effects of gardening on disease risk factors by randomly assigning participants to gardening and non-gardening groups and comparing their health status. I found only one.

In this case, researchers conducted a study in 37 community gardens in Denver and Aurora, Colorado. After raising awareness of the program in various regions, we recruited people on the waiting list for the study. All 291 participants were adults and had never gardened in the last two years. More than half were from low-income households.

Groups assigned to gardening were provided gardening plots, seeds, seedlings, and an introduction to gardening courses. Those assigned to non-gardening groups were offered the same deals during the following gardening season. All participants underwent a health survey that examined factors such as weight, waist circumference, physical activity and diet.

During the study, researchers found that those who gardened ate more fruits and vegetables than others, increasing their consumption by about 1.13 servings per day. They found that he consumed 1.4 grams more fiber per day than the control group and increased his fiber intake by 7% over the course of the program. They also increased moderate to vigorous physical activity and were slightly more active during the study period. Gardeners also reported less stress and anxiety than non-gardeners.

It was a modest improvement, but the researchers say it’s the kind of small change experts recommend as a way to prevent the risk of chronic disease. Smoking, poor diet, and a sedentary lifestyle all contribute to that risk.

“These findings provide concrete evidence that community gardening can play an important role in the prevention of cancer, chronic disease and mental disorders,” said Professor of Environmental Health at the University of Colorado Boulder. says Jill Litt, senior author of the paper. news release.

Researchers funded by the American Cancer Society say community gardening deserves further consideration as a potential health intervention in urban areas.

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