Anyone can grow a home garden in very little space, even on a deck or balcony. All of my crops are grown in pots which range from a one gallon container to a large flower pot. It’s easy to do once you understand a few basic things, which I will address in a future article.
Benefits of Growing Your Own Vegetable and Herb Garden:
• Guarantees that you have availability of seasonal vegetables and herbs. In Florida, we have a very long growing season and literally can have something to harvest year-round.
• Ensures your vegetables and herbs are safe and fresh, maximizing their health benefits.
• Saves money.
• Fresh herbs and vegetables support a healthy immune system and the body’s ability to fight infection.
• Increases outdoor and sun exposure, stimulating our bodies to produce Vitamin D. This improves bone health and supports our immune systems and cardiovascular health.
• Home gardening increases physical activity and therefore bestows health benefits.
• Growing your own vegetables and herbs generally results in eating more vegetables and herbs and less processed foods, thereby contributing to better health. Plant based diets are associated with less chronic disease, reduced risks of developing Cardiovascular disease, cancer, obesity and Type-2 Diabetes. All of these conditions are associated with a worsened prognosis in those with Covid-19 infections.
• Having a vegetable and herb garden is essentially developing a new personal interest and hobby, and generally fun.
• Home gardening provides a sense of pride and accomplishment.
Added rewards of eating the fresh vegetables and herbs you grow:
• Provides Metabolic Support. Vegetables and herbs provide an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. Commercial farming overplants fields, depleting the soil of many trace elements. Personal farming avoids this through crop rotation and thus produces vegetables and herbs that have more essential minerals and trace elements which are critical to maintaining optimal metabolism and overall health.
• Helps Detoxify Free Radicals. Vegetables and herbs are excellent sources of antioxidants which help the body dispose of free radicals normally produced by metabolism. Free radicals are believed to accelerate the aging process and their accumulation in the body is associated with many chronic inflammatory conditions, occurrence of cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease, to name a few.
• Improves Glycemic Control. Herbs and non-starchy vegetables are great sources of fiber which can reduce the glycemic index of a meal, create a sense of satiety so we eat less, lower the risk of certain forms of cancer, improve gut health, promote hormonal balance, and reduce cholesterol and cardiovascular disease.