Health Devotional


Green Garden Gold

Wednesday, April 24, 2019
⇦ Previous

Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. And the Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. Gen. 2:8, 9, NIV.

Growing a garden is good for your health.

It may sound like work, but pruning some trees and sowing some seeds out in the fresh air might be just what you need to lower stress in your life, clear your mind of worries, and help you get the exercise you need to feel better. In fact, just viewing beautiful landscapes can alter blood pressure, heart rate, and muscle tension!

Joel Flagler, an agricultural agent at Rutgers University, says more people garden than any other leisure activity because "it's a wonderful way to counteract stress, refresh yourself, and become more productive."

Studies on people in prisons and mental hospitals report that working with plants releases nurturing instincts and makes them feel useful and renewed. "Role reversals occur when patients who require constant care become caregivers for living things," says Flagler. It makes them feel better about themselves.

But a garden offers more health benefits than just stress-reduction. If you eat fruits and vegetables grown in good soil, without pesticides, you have the best possible chance of getting all the vitamins and minerals your body needs.

For example, low trace mineral levels have been correlated with such problems as allergies, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and arthritis. We get such minerals primarily from our food. In an attempt to determine how commercially grown food compared with homegrown or organically grown food, it was found that in most instances the organic food won, with 240 percent more iron, 120 percent more manganese, and 100 percent more zinc than commercial foods.

All these health benefits from gardening are enough to keep me pruning and planting. And as I look at my Goldcot apricots and rose-blushed Gala apples, and bite into that incredibly sweet, juicy Belle of Georgia peach, I have no doubt in my mind that it was all worth it.

I think God knew what He was doing when He planted a garden for Adam and Eve. It doesn't say He spoke it into being—it says He planted it! For the sake of your health, maybe it's time you followed your Creator's example!

Think about what you could plant this season. Maybe a patio tomato, a cucumber vine, and some radish seeds, and enjoy God's green garden gold.

Used by permission of Health Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.

⇦ Previous