Plants for Mental Health!

Posted by Courtney Steinberg on

Did you know that there have been multiple (and I mean PLENTY) of studies done to prove that plants do in fact contribute to a healthy mental health?


Let's break it down a bit;


Plants Can Help to Reduce Stress, Anxiety, Insomnia, and Depression Vibes:

There was actually a study done n 2007 relating to the soil that we house our plants in. They found that the bacteria Mycobacterium vaccae actually can trigger serotonin releases. Serotonin is a naturally occurring substance that basically is the communication between all of your nerve cells. By having more serotonin released, it causes your nerve cells to do a number of things. In the brain, it helps with memory and mood regulation. In the midsection organs, it helps with digestion by helping you to be more aware of when you're actually full or hungry, as well as healthy bowl functions. In the circulatory system, it helps with blood flow and wound healing. In our skeletal system, it helps with bone density (strength). And it helps to maintain a healthy sleep cycle. So, overall, if you feel good - you're eating properly, digesting properly, sleeping well, and in a good mood - this is all caused by serotonin flowing through your entire body. All of these things together work to help your mental health and to help keep things like depression, anxiety, and insomnia at lower levels. And if plants can help bring in some extra serotonin levels, why not put a few plants in and around the places you frequent most? Like your home, work, your yard...


They Can Help to Expand Your Creativity and Productivity Levels;

If you ask any artist, myself included, "where do you find inspiration?" I guarantee in their top three answers will be something to the effect of "outside", "nature", "my cabin by the lake". There's no secret that the natural world is what gives many of people their creative inspiration. Remember when you were a kid and you would come up with random things you could "see" in the clouds. We all know those clouds weren't trying to look like a pirate ship or a dancing elephant. The creative mind is always fascinating and will create anything it can think of. Many people have the craziest amazing ideas when they're in the shower, and that 's because the mind is relaxed and unplugged from our modern screen glued world and in a closer state to the natural world. Adding a few plants in and around your home or place of work, can continue to remind your brain hat the natural world is there, and that can help to keep the creative eye open. Your creative eye is more sleepy while you're seeing eyes are glued to a phone or computer screen.


Plants Engage Your Senses;

This is going to relate back to our plugged in world. While we use our eyes and for many things these days, like looking at our screens and watching videos. Some of our other senses play in the background, like touch and smell. Yes we all touch things all day and we smell our food while its cooking. But those are things that we don't actively think about. But when you see a big beautiful blooming flower, you may think "I need to smell it" And when you go in to smell the plant, you can't help but touch it while you're there and see if the petals are soft, cold, wrinkly, etc. Using these senses in this way also contribute to how plants can help our creativity, remind us of our connection to nature, and give us a moment of happiness to enjoy. 



They Can Help You Feel More Soothed, Calm, Relaxed, & Centered;

There are so many things in each of our day to day lives that contribute to our individual stress. Although we all have stress, and stress will never be 100% gone from our bodies, high levels can be very unhealthy, and sometimes even deadly. Think of a time when you've been on vacation, you were sitting outside, taking in the warm sun and your surroundings. You feel good, you feel relaxed, enlightened, stress free, no one is calling you or emailing. Vacation is an incredible get away that many people have the option to take. But why wait all year for your one vacation week, or maybe you don't have the option to vacation. Adding plants to a cozy, quiet spot in your home can give you a very similar vibe. It's the simple thought of having some type of quiet, calm, soothing nature around us to pull us back to our natural state of calm. Even if you only have a minute to take a deep breathe and enjoy the nature before the kids come screaming down the hall or the home office phone rings. A minute here and there each day can do way more than I bet you are thinking right now. Give it a try and tell me I'm wrong! 


They Remind Us of Our Connection to Nature & The Unplugged World;

I think I've already touched on this one, so this will be quick. It's simple. we are natural beings who started our history in nature, we will always need nature, and we can't continue on without it. So bottom line, get some nature in the places you spend the most time in, and see for yourself how it can change some vibes!


Plants Are Great Air Quality Boosters/Cleaners;

Through out COVID I saw a TON of places advertising " plants- help clean the air", "plants help keep your home clean of Flu blah blah". I AM NOT saying plants can help with any sickness, disease, COVId, nothing to that effect. I have not done any and probably will never do any studies on how plants can effect things like that. (It was the NASA Clean Air Study). That being said, NASA has done studies on how plants in the home can effect your air quality. This meaning, how clean the air is of certain items like; carbon dioxide, volatile organic compounds such as formaldehyde etc. Plant use their photosynthesis process to absorb many toxins in the air, clean what they have absorbed, use it as their nutrients, and then releases a cleaner, fresher oxygen back into the air. the easies way to physically see....or smell this. Is if you drive out to the nearest "country side" to you, step outside, take in a few big breaths and just smell and feel the clean. Then, get back in your car, drive up to your nearest city, and take the same few big breaths. Tell me you can't smell and feel the difference and how dirty the air in the city is compared to the "countryside".


They Can Majorly Help to shake the Winter Blues;

So I'm from Massachusetts. Born and raised, moved out of Massachusetts for a year or two here and there, and have traveled quite a bit. We have some long, cold, dry winters here. There was studies done that i remember hearing about that people in warmer climates actually live less stressful, longer lives. And although the warm weather and sunshine all year round has a good amount to do with that, so do the plants that are able to live longer than 6 months. Winter Blues is a real and difficult thing that many people in colder climate areas go through durring the winter months. You walk out side and what do you see? Bare trees, dead grass, dead plants, basically just a bunch of brown with a few evergreens tossed in. So. Freakin. Beautiful. Now, when you walk outside of your vacation home in Florida in December what do you see? Blue skies, lush green grass, palms trees happily blowing in the breeze. Here's the bottom line, winter months suck. You may love the cold weather and the snow, but you can't argue that you feel a different type of way when you see lawns start to turn green again and plants filling in the dead space EVERYWHERE. You can help battle your winter blues by adding those happy plants into your indoor areas. I have so many plants in my home, and throughout the winter months some of them will bloom. I can clearly see that when anyone walks into my home during those months, they immediately see the plants, and SMILE. No one knows that I have seen them do this, but they all do it. Even the ones who say they love Winter better. You see a happy plant, and it makes you happy! 

..oh yeah, and do you get dry skin in the winter time? Plants will push out humidity as well as oxygen, so they can help with take down the dryness in the air too!



If you want to add some plants to your home, but don't think your thumb is quite green yet. Here are some easy starter plants to help you get started;


Thanks for reading! 

Tag @eelavon_ in some photos of your home, office, or cozy corner plants! We would LOVE to see them! 


* Courtney Lee 




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