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The plot - recipe for happiness, health and lack of stress - 21.12.2015

According to the British BBC Health website, only 30 minutes of work on the plot every week is enough to improve our well-being and also reduce the risk of mental health problems.

These conclusions are the result of research that led scientists from the Universities in Westminster and Essex in the UK. In the course of the experiment they conducted a study on 269 people half of whom cultivated a plot. All respondents were asked about mood, well-being, health and self-esteem.

Based on questionnaires collected, it turned out that the allotment gardeners who worked in the garden no less than half an hour during the week had a much better mood, health and self-esteem. The benefits are much greater. Working allotment  gardeners could boast lower than other respondents, BMI (a measure of normal body weight relative to height), which is important in assessing the risk of diseases associated with overweight and obesity, for example diabetes, coronary heart disease, arteriosclerosis. Increased BMI is associated with an increased risk for these diseases.

Moreover, work on the plot has a de-stressing effect. Allotment gardeners felt less  mental tension and were more cheerful and less often got angry. - Cultivating a parcel may play an important role in improving mental well-being of people living in cities, where contact with nature is difficult, so there is an increased risk of mental health problems - notes co-author of the research, Dr. Carly Wood of the University of Essex.

- We need a strategy that allows better use of neglected land - commented the results of the experiment the president of the UK Faculty of Public Health, Professor John Ashton.

The data derived by scientific method  seem to confirm what  allotment gardeners have known for a long time and is stated in  an old Chinese proverb:: "If you want to be happy one day - get drunk. If you want to be happy for a year - get married. If you want lifelong be happy - Set up a garden ".

The author: Agnieszka Hrynkiewicz

The translator: Agnieszka Drążek

Media Department in the Polish Allotment Gardens Federation

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