Practising social distancing means more time spent at home.
And many people use this time to start growing vegetables in their garden.
There’s a saying that you reap what you sow. And in the case of a vegetable garden, a rich harvest may bring more than dinner.
Anya Guy, a Mayo Clinic dietitian in the United States, says gardening is good for your body and mind.
So go ahead and dig in. You may go from an empty plot to a bounty.
She says tending a garden offers an abundance of health benefits.
“You will increase your intake of fruits and vegetables ultimately because you have them right in your backyard,” she says.
Gardening can also help reduce stress and anxiety levels, and offer regular light physical activity.
Wondering what to grow?
Guy says to consider a rainbow variety.
“Different vegetables have a variety of different health benefits unique to each of them,” she says.
Chilli peppers and banana peppers, for example, contain capsaicin, which has been shown to have a number of health benefits.
And then there’s eggplant.
“Eggplant actually grows surprisingly well in a home garden. It’s easy to grow and it can feed a lot of people in the family,” she says.
A homegrown tomato is often a gardener’s pride.
Rich in antioxidants, tomatoes contain potassium and vitamin C, and are a source of fibre.
“If you don’t have the option to garden at home, keep in mind that community gardens are another option,” says Guy.
By embracing your green thumb, you may be able to unpack your vegetable basket, instead of a grocery bag. – Mayo Clinic News Network/Tribune News Service
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