5 Health Benefits of House Plants

A ficus in the corner, a fern on the window sill–house plants shouldn’t just be afterthoughts on the interior design agenda. They actually contribute to your physical and mental wellness.

1. Air Quality

Leaves help produce oxygen, which improves indoor air quality. Scattering a few house plants in your favorite rooms will help you breathe easily every time you walk through your front door.

Roots also contribute to healthy air quality by nourishing helpful bacteria in the soil. The bacterial activity has been shown to deplete pollutants in the air. According to the Mother Nature Network, the best house plants to cultivate for improved air quality include spider plants, Gerber daisies, and azaleas.

2. Odor

Your olfactory senses enable you to identify food, danger, and other important details of your environment. According to Prevention.com, your sense of smell can also improve your mental health.

The smell of lavender, for example, is calming and can ward of insomnia, while a whiff of peppermint might ease that headache you’ve been nursing.

3. Mood

Everyone has a bad day now and again, but spending a few bucks on house plants might help you get over your irritation, frustration, or stress much faster. Plants are living organisms, and watching them flourish in your home can improve your general outlook on life.

Research conducted at Texas A&M University suggests that house plants can also improve concentration and information retention. If your kids are always besting you at games of Memory, it might be time to invest in a snake plant or two.

4. Nourishment

The health benefits of house plants aren’t just theoretical or abstract. If you grow herbs, vegetables, and other edible plants, you can also use them to nourish your body.

Grow a basil plant in your kitchen window, then crush the leaves to flavor tomato soup or lemon pepper chicken. Not only will you be healthier, but your wallet will appreciate the break.

5. Purpose

House plants aren’t the same as children–or even pets–but they do give their caretakers a sense of purpose. Watching a plant grow under your patient ministrations can provide a host of mental health benefits.

Choose house plants that make you happy, either because of their beauty or because of their fruits. Placing a single plant in every room of your home can produce innumerable health benefits.

Sources:

Prevention.com: http://www.prevention.com/mind-body/natural-remedies/scents-can-improve-your-health/4-lavender-or-peppermint
MNN.com: http://www.mnn.com/health/healthy-spaces/photos/15-houseplants-for-improving-indoor-air-quality/spider-plant