The Health Benefits of Houseplants

The Health Benefits of Houseplants

The benefits of plants and nature on humans have been documented for millennia.  More recent studies have confirmed plant’s beneficial roles.  In winter when we spend less time in nature, houseplants can be an economical addition to improve health and happiness in your home or office.

  • Caring for or having plants nearby improves your mood which has contributed to the growth of plant therapy programs.
  • Plants lower stress, anxiety, depression and fatigue.
  • Plants improve mental focus with up to 15% improvement in concentration and productivity.
  • Therapeutic benefits include boosting pain tolerance and healing.
  • Plants improve air quality and minimize the occurrence of headaches.
  • They help regulate air moisture easing dry skin, allergies and other respiratory conditions.

As the weather gets colder and we spend more time indoors, we increase exposure to toxins from carpeting, flooring, paint and drywall, electronics and electromagnetic frequencies with cell phones, wifi and Bluetooth, copiers and ink, chemicals in cleaning agents, etc.  Our bodies are exposed for longer durations to unhealthy environments.  Add a lack of ventilation, artificial lighting and daily stress, and we have conditions for a challenged immune system and illness.

The University of Washington trials suggest that interacting with nature helps reduce stress, lower blood pressure, encourage faster healing, and increase overall happiness.

Surveys of office workers correlate increased job satisfaction and a higher level of commitment when having potted plants at their desks or seeing greenery out the window.

NASA research in the 1980s found that house plants were able to remove up to 87% of certain indoor toxins from the air in just 24 hours. 

Plants uptake carbon dioxide and release oxygen during the day when photosynthesis occurs. Through this exchange, they also purify the air from volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which are emitted from mammals as well as synthetic compounds in furnishings and building materials.  VOCs can build up indoors and are contaminants above a certain threshold. Plants can cleanse the air from these pollutants quickly. 

At night most plants switch things up and release carbon dioxide. However, plants such as orchids, succulents, snake plants, and bromeliads do the opposite and emit oxygen at night, making them perfect plants for the bedroom.
Plants are good for all ages.  ADHD studies show increased attention, focus, and problem-solving skills in children doing tasks in the presence of plants.  The generation demographic with the largest growth in house plant purchases since 2016 is millennials.  They account for over 30% of houseplant sales.

Houseplants at The Mill of Kingstown

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