- Lots of social support
- Daily exercise
- A plant based diet
- People who garden into their 80’s and 90’s!
So is there a reason people with “green thumbs” live longer?
Gardening is a popular hobby, and something the world’s oldest living people have in common. “. . . the analogy of a chair: diet, physical activity, mental engagement and social connection are the four legs. If you’re missing a chair leg you fall out of balance, and it can shorten life expectancy. Longevity isn’t about one single factor . . . “*Maybe you should take it up (if you haven’t already).
Keep your mood up
Being outdoors lifts your mood and moderate exercise is correlated with a longer life. Gardening gives you both . . . continually. It doesn’t matter if you plant flowers, vegetables or hedges. All gardens need tending, so people who garden get all the benefits of exercise and sunshine regularly.
There is evidence that gardeners live longer and are less stressed and studies show both physical and mental health benefits from gardening:
There’s a simple truth: gardeners are more likely to plant what they want to eat.
You are likely to eat more vegetables and fruit, which are a big part of the kind of diet that is associated with longevity. And you know exactly what pesticides, if any, you have sprayed onto the food.
There’s evidence that farming is one of the healthiest careers. Farmers:
- have fewer chronic illnesses (by a third)
- are less likely to see a doctor
- are less likely to die of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes than the population as a whole.
- work later into life
- live longer
No land? Buy container pots!
or move to Okinawa, Japan – Nicoya, Costa Rica – Icaria, Greece – Loma Linda, California or Sardinia, Italy
*Dr Bradley Willcox of the University of Hawaii studies