As you are enjoying the fruits of your labor, creating healthy and tasty cuisine with the vegetables plucked directly from your garden, you are probably not aware of the benefits gardening holds. As you are prepping the peas, cucumbers and tomatoes you raised, consider the studies that have discovered gardening improves both your physical as well as mental health. From our greenhouse to your garden, the vegetables you grew over the summer offered more than just a tasty dish.

It is really difficult not to delight in life when you are surrounded by flowers and vegetables in your garden. Professors from the University of Texas found that gardeners had notably higher scores in levels of happiness and optimism. That is, those who kept a garden were much happier in general than those who do not garden. Basically, gardening as a therapy to ward off depression may be as useful as taking a Prozac.

The mental health benefits of gardening is so strong that there is actually a field of medicine called horticulture therapy that was developed for those suffering psychiatric disorders. Studies have indeed concluded that those who suffer from conditions such as dementia and anxiety are calmed through gardening. Coping with stress is something many of us deal with on a daily basis, gardening does go a long way in easing the mind and even leading to better sleep.

The physical activities that goes along with gardening leads to weight loss and overall better health. Pulling weeds and digging holes is just as good for you as lifting weights and walking on the treadmill.

The bottom line is gardening offers so much more than just the vegetables in your kitchen and the flowers at your dining room table.