Gar­den­ing can make old peo­ple stay more Healthy

The Northlines - - HOME & GARDEN -

In­dulging in gar­den­ing may not only keep older adults ac­tive but also boost their health and men­tal well- be­ing, finds a study.

The find­ings showed that older women who spend more than three hours on house­hold chores a day and got less or more than seven hours of sleep a night, were less likely to be in good health.

How­ever, the re­searchers found that the sim­i­lar cri­te­ria had no ef­fect on the health of el­derly men.

It is be­cause older women spent more time do­ing repi­ti­tive house­work like clean­ing and cook­ing, while men spent time in gar­den­ing and main­te­nance work, which is men­tally very stim­u­lat­ing, the Daily Mail re­ported.

"The dif­fer­ence in the sexes' health is prob­a­bly to do with the type of house­work women tend to do, which is a lot more repet­i­tive and rou­tine work, like clean­ing and cook­ing. While this prob­a­bly has some limited health ben­e­fits, it is not very phys­i­cally ac­tive, is not re­ally ex­er­cise and is not very stim­u­lat­ing men­tally, which re­lates to phys­i­cal health," Ni­cholas Ad­jei, re­searcher at the Leib­niz In­sti­tute for Preven­tion Re­search and Epi­demi­ol­ogy in Ger­many, was quoted as say­ing by the pa­per.

"Men did much more ac­tive house­hold chores, such as gar­den­ing and main­te­nance. The phys­i­cal ex­er­tion is good for the health, with gar­den­ing in­volv­ing dig­ging, mow­ing and car­ry­ing soil. We think gar­den­ing and fix­ing things may also be more en­joy­able than clean­ing," Ad­jei added.

For the study, re­searchers looked at more than 36,000 pen­sion­ers, who re­ported about their daily ac­tiv­i­ties and gen­eral health. Health­i­ness was cal­cu­lated based on par­tic­i­pants' an­swers to a ques­tion­naire, in which they rated their health on a five-point scale from "poor" to "very good".

The re­sults showed that even tak­ing away sleep, which can im­pact peo­ple's health, men ap­pear health­ier when do­ing jobs around the house.

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