Mélina Lamarche

By Mélina Lamarche

June 15, 2015

Health

GIY (grow-it-yourself) gardening for fun and good nutrition!

Article revised on 16 June 2017

During the summer, do you enjoy spending hours growing your own fruits and vegetables or tending your flower bed? If so, we would like you to know that working in your garden or vegetable patch is good for your health!

According to Health Canada, gardening is much more than a simple pastime. It is even considered to be a low- to moderate-intensity activity, depending on your level of exertion. Health Canada recommends that adults take part in at least 2.5 hours of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity each week.

Take advantage of the warmer weather to cultivate your green thumb!

Prevent minor injuries

Here are a few tips on how to prevent injuries that might impact your enjoyment and your health:

  • Make a list of the jobs to be done. Start with the easiest ones, to warm up your muscles.
  • Respect your limits and work at your own pace. Don’t hesitate to take a break when you’re tired.
  • Use the right tool for the job.
  • Use a wheelbarrow to move soil or heavy objects.
  • Alternate tasks to avoid repeating the same movements for too long.
  • Wear gloves to protect your hands from cuts, scrapes, irritations, etc.
  • Follow the instructions for use of your equipment and chemical products.
  • Apply sunscreen (with a minimum 15 SPF) regularly, and avoid gardening between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the sun is the strongest.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
  • Wear the appropriate clothing to protect yourself from the sun and mosquitoes. You may want to use an insect repellent.

Source: Health Canada

The Viva Workplace health and wellness program is a turnkey program that’s specially designed to meet employers’ needs with regard to health and wellness promotion and prevention.

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