Gardens play a powerful role in the care of our minds and bodies and should be used more systematically in our health and social care system, says a new report by The King’s Fund. The report, commissioned by the National Gardens Scheme, calls on policymakers, the NHS, clinicians and local government to recognise and promote the importance of gardens and gardening in improving health outcomes.
Access to gardens has been linked to reduced depression, loneliness, anxiety and stress; benefits for conditions including heart disease, cancer and obesity; better balance, which can help to prevent falls in older people; and alleviating symptoms of dementia. But, says the report, the formal use of gardens in England’s health and social care system remains very limited, despite promising results from a range of interventions, including the ‘social prescribing’ of gardening by GPs. Much more could be done to harness its benefits, it says, resulting both in better health for individuals and lower healthcare costs for the state.
Read the full report at :
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