By Mary Mazzoni on May 21, 2013

5 Ways Gardening is Good for Your Health

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Gardening at home is a great way to connect with Mother Nature. But the planet-friendly hobby is also fantastic for maintaining a healthy lifestyle – even if your crop comes from containers on the fire escape. Don’t believe us? Read on for five big reasons to get in the garden this season.

Photo: Alex Vietti, Earth911

Photo: Alexandra Vietti, Earth911

1. Ensure nutrient-rich produce

It goes without saying that it’s far easier to know exactly what’s in your food if you grow it yourself. By spending a few extra dollars up front for organic soil and fertilizer, you’ll ensure healthy, organic produce for your kitchen and you may even save some cash on store-bought organics in the long-run.

To produce the highest quality crops possible, you can also use a fancy schmancy garden gadget called a refractometer, also known as a Brix meter, to monitor nutritional value and pick your produce at its peak.

These handy tools are available online and in most garden retailers and use the Brix scale to measure the amount of light refracted in a liquid. The higher the Brix level of your crops’ juice, the higher the dissolved solids such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids and other healthy good stuff.

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