We are busy people with busy lives, and the constant schedules, deadlines, and pressures of everyday life can increase our stress levels exponentially.
If we’re being honest, the truth is that there isn’t a lot of spare time in our day-to-day lives, so going to the spa or taking a vacation for stress relief isn’t really an option. Thankfully, there are some things we can do at home to reduce our stress levels and provide more of a “relaxed” vibe for our well-being.
As Healthline reports, “Stress hormones are the same ones that trigger your body’s “fight or flight” response. Your heart races, your breath quickens, and your muscles ready for action. This response was designed to protect your body in an emergency by preparing you to react quickly. But when the stress response keeps firing, day after day, it could put your health at serious risk.”
All the more reason to add some of these plants to your home environment.
Peppermint is an excellent mood-booster and stress-reliever. The scent of mint can have many positive effects on the body and mind. A study on the effects of peppermint on drivers conducted by the Wheeling Jesuit University showed remarkable results that included decreased anxiety and fatigue while driving. Peppermint can also improve the quality of life for many people though enhancing mental and athletic performance, cognitive functioning, digestive processes and pain tolerance, according to Bryan Raudenbush, Wheeling Jesuit University.
While most of us have had (or at least heard of) how chamomile tea can calm the nerves and prepare the mind and body for sleep, there are actually many uses for this traditional medicinal herb. According to a massive study on the effects of chamomile, there are several reasons why we should all have this plant in our home or garden. “Chamomile has been used as an herbal medication since ancient times, is still popular today and probably will continue to be used in the future because it contains various bioactive phytochemicals that could provide therapeutic effects. Chamomile can help in improving cardiovascular conditions, stimulate immune system and provide some protection against other ailments.”
The blue and purple colours of the floral buds on the lavender plant are just as calming as their rich scent. There are numerous cases where the scent of lavender has improved someone’s mental clarity, or reduced anxiety significantly. It’s proven that smelling this beautiful plant, or the oils from it, can reduce anxiety and stress, so why not give it a try?
My grandmother’s garden was full of jasmine, and it was the most serene place in the world to me when I was growing up. Now I know why. Jasmine oil is often touted as a natural remedy for stress, anxiety, depression, fatigue, menstrual cramps and menopausal symptoms. Inhaling jasmine oil molecules is said to transmit messages to a brain region involved in controlling emotions.
There’s a lot more to this plant than a simple sunburn remedy. Besides having antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, aloe vera has shown to be a medically significant plant in certain studies. A study published in Nutritional Neuroscience found that Aloe vera reduced depression and improved memory in mice. After carrying out experiments on laboratory mice, they concluded: “Aloe vera enhances learning and memory, and also alleviates depression in mice.” Further studies are needed to establish whether humans might also receive the same benefits.
Sian Wild, FlorismartUK florist and Owner of The Flower Lounge says, “Flowers do more than just brighten your room, they can have an uplifting and brightening effect on your mood too. Research has shown that the impact can last for days, proving much more powerful than a bar of chocolate.”
“Flowers can chase away anxieties, worries and the blues, making people feel less depressed, troubled or agitated. This is linked to their colour, smell or even the act of giving or receiving flowers. Chrysanthemums have been shown to lessen symptoms of worry and stress, and when taken as tea, this flower cools and relaxes our body.”
Enjoy the benefits of these five plants!
“Spending time caring for plants is a great way to help look after your mental health. Nurturing the buds and seeing the plants grow can be very rewarding and helps boost self-esteem,” say the gardening experts at BillyOh. “In order to properly look after plants, time needs to be spent away from electronic devices, allowing gardeners to ‘zone out’.”