Saturday, May 23, 2009

Digging in the dirt: Good for your Soul?

While we were shoveling compost during my community garden work party, I gave up on my shovel and began grabbing the last piles of dirt with my hands. Rich black stuff, quality compost; you know the type. Someone asked me if I wanted gloves, and as I refused, another girl working on the same task said that she had heard somewhere something about touching dirt releasing serotonin. I really wanted this to be what she said. I really wanted her to have been serious about it, but I wasn't sure. I went home and looked up to see what I could find, and sure enough: a bacteria in the soil causes your brain to produce extra serotonin. So if you're ever feeling a little down, you should really get digging in the dirt. Plant your favorite vegetable. It is totally worth the effort.

Read the article.


ally said...

i didn't read the article (lazy) but i bet there's also some primal connection left over from our ancestors between connecting with Mother Earth and feelin' happy.

Jen said...

Yup it's true. I know many people that believe (me included) that it is grounding to touch plants. It gets one out of the technology-driven, fast-paced frenzy we live in and back to the basics. When I am really frustrated, re-potting a plant or playing in the grass is a sure-fire pick me up.