Although they make for great home decor pieces, plants boast other significant benefits, as well. Read on to learn more about them.
They Purify the Air
There’s more to plants than oxygen production. House plants make for great air purifiers. A study conducted by NASA back in the ’80s found that some plants could remove up to 87 percent of measured toxins present in the air in just 24 hours. This includes bacteria, mold, and even chemicals such as benzene, formaldehyde, and ammonia, which have been linked to headaches and eye irritation. These toxins become particularly threatening to our health in cases of poor ventilation which can lead to what is known as “sick building syndrome,” a condition involving cold-like symptoms.
On top of purifying the air you breathe, house plants also increase the level of humidity in the environment, which helps with respiratory problems, prevents dry coughs and sore throat. NASA scientists even assembled a list of the best indoor plants for cleaner air, which you should check out to plan your houseplant purchases.
They Improve Sleep Quality
While most plants process carbon dioxide and convert it into oxygen during the day, some do it during the night. This increases the level of clean air in your room overnight, which can aid in getting a better night’s sleep by preventing (to some extent) sleep apnea and snoring.
Plants like Jasmine, Lavender, and Aloe Vera provide the body and mind with a soothing effect that can lead to a lower heart rate, blood pressure, and stress levels—all things that can easily disrupt your sleep.
They Boost Creativity and Productivity
This might seem almost too good to be true, but it has scientific evidence to back it up. A 2014 study conducted by a group of psychologists found that workers perform better in the presence of plants in their workspace. They showed 15 percent more productivity and scored better on memory retention tests, findings which had also been suggested in a previous study.
And that’s not all. Another study even showed how performance could be improved by merely looking at a picture involving some greenery. But why limit yourself to foliage-rich screensavers and artwork? Add the real deal to your office for the visual and environmental boost.
They Help Reduce Stress
Remember how we said they could help lower blood pressure, heart rate, and stress levels? Well, that wasn’t the end of it. One particular study conducted at the New University of Technology Sydney highlighted the benefits of having plants in the work environment. Significant markers of workplace stress, anxiety, and tension fell by 30-60%. Plants have also been found to provide a sense of stability and comfort, similar to what we experience when surrounded by nature.
If you’re worried that you don’t have a green enough thumb to maintain a jungle in your home, don’t worry. Even a small number of plants can have a positive effect, with benefits increasing as you move from tending a few plants to a wide variety through your home.
You might have to commit to watering your new plant, but you can rest assured that you’ll benefit immensely from having that new little companion.