Whether you’re stuck at home in a quarantine, retired and looking for a new hobby or someone wanting to take the next step toward a healthier lifestyle, chances are growing vegetables could be right for you. Gardening is one of the most rewarding hobbies, but also one of the healthiest hobbies in the world to take up. Here are our five reasons why health conscious people should give gardening a go:

  1. Homegrown Produce Is Healthier

When you grow your own fruits and vegetables, you get to eat them right off the vine, tree or bush. That means all the natural antioxidants and nutrients present in the produce haven’t had any time to decay, so you’re packing an even greater nutritional punch with each meal made from your homegrown harvest. Growing vegetables also means you’re in complete control of your growing methods, so you can avoid the use of harmful pesticides and herbicides and enjoy a completely organic experience.

  1. Homegrown Produce is More Delicious

As everyone who has ever eaten a fresh tomato off the vine knows, homegrown fruits and veggies seem to just better. You’re not imagining it! Eating produce fresh from your garden tastes better than store-bought because the natural flavors and textures of the fruit or vegetable haven’t had time to decay, and there is a higher concentration of the chemicals that make our food taste good in each bite. With such delicious produce, the motivation to eat your own produce will be at an all-time high, and you’ll be finding creative new ways to work these goodies into your home cooking in no time.

  1. Gardening is a Workout

Gardening is hard work, but it’s also a workout! Lifting heavy bags of soil, getting on hands and knees and standing up again, trimming hedges, pulling up weeds and digging in the dirt are all ways to get your heart pumping and build strength. Gardening counts as moderate physical activity and especially for adults 65 and older, it’s one of the best ways to stay physically fit.

  1. Get Some Vitamin D

Gardening outdoors or even by an open window can be a great way to soak in some sunlight. Vitamin D tends to be deficient in older adults, so finding ways to get some extra is always beneficial. Sunlight on the skin has been shown in studies to lower blood pressure, lift mood and improve sleep, so any excuse to get outside for a few hours a day is a healthy hobby.

  1. Gardening is Great for Mental Health

Gardening is great for mental health. Studies show just being around green vegetation gives us a sense of calm and boosts our mood, so a daily dose of gardening can become a great part of a self-care routine. With so much time spent in front of screens these days, gardening can be a welcome break from the monotony of staying inside.

To get started growing vegetables, there are guides online for almost any climate and any experience level. To experience all these great benefits and more, look for a style guide to gardening that fits your home best and get to work!