The best houseplants for stress and anxiety relief

Both Aloe Vera and English Ivy are great options. (Photos: Kulbir, Pexels / Alexandra Tran)

A little greenery in your home does a lot of good.

Indoor plants make any space more stylish and inviting, and they make you feel like you definitely have your life together.

But, aside from making your living room 100% more Instagrammable, houseplants also offer incredible benefits for your mental health.

In fact, experts say plants and gardening can reduce anxiety, depression, stress, and insomnia.

“Harnessing your creative energy can reduce anxiety, depression, stress, and improve your overall mental and physical health. The average person has over 6,000 thoughts a day, so a creative activity like gardening can help focus the mind by calming the brain and body, ”says Martin Preston, founder of the Delamere Health Specialty Rehabilitation Clinic.

“Creativity goes beyond making you happy in the present. It is also an effective way to reduce the symptoms of dementia, improve memory and cognitive abilities.

“Your memory starts to improve as you become more imaginative, so get creative with your indoor garden displays by adding color, texture and decorative elements. “

Scientific evidence suggests that working with nature lowers levels of cortisol – a chemical our bodies produce in response to stress.

“While being outdoors is good for stress, your green oasis indoors also offers relief from stressors caused by everyday life,” adds Martin.

He says nurturing the plants and living things in your home can also help give you purpose.

“Having a growth mindset can benefit our lives as you start to enjoy challenges despite anxiety and nervousness,” he says. “It’s typical because we value growth and learning.”

Here, the experts at Delamere Health have shared the best houseplants for improving your mental health and reducing stress:

Peace lily

“NASA has discovered that the peace lily is one of the most effective plants at filtering out harmful toxins and pollutants from the air. One of the main benefits it provides to human health is combating toxic household chemicals including benzene, xylene, and carbon monoxide.

Peace lilies also help remove mold spores from the air.

“Therefore, it will help reduce the symptoms associated with mold exposure, including eye irritation, coughing, sneezing, throat irritation, and skin irritation.”

Aloe Vera

We all know Aloe Vera is a hero of the anti-inflammatory world, and you’ve probably used it to heal wounds or things like sunburns, acne, and eczema. But the plant also has air purifying qualities.

“Research on the behavior of nurses has found that exposure to pollution increases the risk of symptoms of anxiety, including fear, the desire to avoid and the tendency to worry.

“The Aloe Vera plant also removes harmful chemicals from the air that can impact our respiratory system and trigger feelings of stress and discomfort. “

Snake Plant

“Snake plants, in addition to adding a nice touch of green to your home, can help improve indoor air by absorbing toxic airborne pollutants, such as formaldehyde and toluene which have a impact on your sleep, mood and energy levels. ”

Snake plants do very well in most homes because they like dry soil and you don’t mind if you aren’t the most diligent waterer.

“It would be the perfect home decorating option for any novice gardener who wants a plant that looks good in their home and has a positive influence on their mental health at the same time.”

snake plant

They are difficult to kill. (Photo: Charlotte May, Pexels)

Lavender

‘The calming scent of lavender makes it a perfect accompaniment to aromatherapy. The scent of the plant is believed to promote a sense of calm and tranquility, with properties helping to reduce stress, anxiety, and possibly even mild pain.

“In fact, research on the behavior of dental patients has found that the scent of lavender significantly reduces the anxiety levels of participants with phobias. The aroma of the plant created a natural sense of calm for patients awaiting treatment. ‘

Rosemary

“You could think of rosemary as an outdoor herb that exists only to add flavor to your food. But when you keep rosemary inside, it can help lower the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in your blood.

Scientists have actually found that only the scent of rosemary can improve cognitive function, which may help reduce symptoms of anxiety.

Jasmine

Jasmine has been found to improve brain activity, induce sleep, and help relieve symptoms of mental illness.

“Studies have concluded that the scent of the plant has therapeutic benefits that can be used as a medicinal alternative for depression, stress, anxiety and insomnia.

“The scent of the jasmine plant has a direct impact on the brain’s central nervous system chemical known as GABA, which has the effect of calming the nerves, reducing anxiety and mild depression, and helping to calm down. ‘improve the quality of sleep in individuals. ”

Jasmine

Calm your nerves. (Photo: Avin CP, Unsplash)

English ivy

English ivy is known to be easy to care for, but researchers say it’s also a powerhouse for removing harmful toxins from the air in your home.

“This plant is particularly beneficial for anyone with a green thumb who is looking to calm their allergies, especially those with asthma.

“The air-purifying properties of English Ivy reduce airborne mold in the home and remove formaldehyde from the air, which helps promote a good night’s sleep.

“Research by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology found that the plant removes 94% of airborne feces and 78% of airborne mold in just 12 hours. “

This must be good news. The less faeces in the air, the better.

Chrysanthemum

Chrysanthemums do more than brighten up your space. The properties of the plant can also have a positive influence on your mood and mental well-being.

“Like other flowers, chrysanthemums improve air quality by reducing ammonia, toluene and formaldehyde.

“Studies have shown that surrounding individuals with the flower can improve short-term memory and overall mood.”

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