With Renee Bailey – 

How can you reduce stress, lower blood pressure, increase productivity, extend the time you are able to focus on a task and improve sleep quality all at the same time?

The answer is plants, yes plants, those green things we see outside have amazing bene ts for our health when we bring them inside our home and into our work spaces.

We all are aware on some level that the air indoors is not as fresh and clean as it could be and it even has it’s own term “sick building syndrome” (a condition affecting office workers, typically marked by headaches and respiratory problems, attributed to unhealthy or stressful factors in the working environment such as poor ventilation.)

“NSW Dept of Works estimated SBS related absenteeism cost $125 million annually and between 5% and 40% of all office workers experience symptoms”

Plants in your home and workspace can contribute greatly in helping to improve your environment and your health.

Plants are nature’s first air purifier, NASA’s popular Clean Air Study from 1989 states “This plant system is one of the most promising means of alleviating the sick building syndrome associated with many new, energy efficient buildings.”

Some of the chemicals NASA found in homes and offices

NASA’s plant recommendations

 

Removing up to 10 percent of the carbon dioxide in the air and increasing the air’s humidity, by releasing water as moisture vapor, plants will improve the air quality in your home and workspace and assist in protecting you and your family against respiratory problems, dry coughs and sore throat.

Death by Desk is real and we all know “Stress” is a modern day silent killer! It has been proven to be a contributing factor in many chronic diseases and shown to cause harm to all organs in the body.

In 2013, Safe Work Australia released a comprehensive report detailing the incidence and impact of work-related mental stress claims in Australia. The report states, mental stress claims are the most expensive type of workers’ compensation claim. Absenteeism costs Australian employers around $10.11 billion per year.

Plants improve stress levels, reduce fatigue, lower heart rate and blood pressure and have an overall positive effect on health and emotional wellbeing. Studies have shown significant reductions

in stress among workers when plants were introduced to their workspace, which included a 37% fall in reported tension and anxiety; a 58% drop in depression or dejection; a 44% decrease in anger and hostility; and a 38% reduction in fatigue.

Recent studies suggest plants in workspaces can increase focus anywhere from 10 – 70 percent and researcher Kamal Meattle, found productivity increased by more than 20 percent. Listen to Kamal Meattle’s TEDTalk here: TEDTalk – Kamal Meattle

Plants can improve health, reduce absenteeism and increase productivity and focus! Can you afford not to have plants in your workspace or home?

Let’s not overlook all things edible when it comes to plants indoors and with some help from your local nursery, I am sure you will find some indoor edibles to suit your space. From kale in the kitchen to lemon trees in the lounge room, bringing edible plants into the home and workspace will not only deliver all the bene ts above but will also help with lunch! What better way to improve your health and wellbeing than growing healthy, fresh, organic produce.

In recent years, it seems as if every home, new office, cafe and public building has a green wall. Now the research shows this is not just another design fad, its essential for our health and economy to bring plants into the home and office!

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