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Science News: From allotments to home gardens: Nurturing health with fresh produce

– K.J., Editor

A diet packed with nutritious fruit and vegetables contributes to gastrointestinal health and quality of life, so access to these foods is very important. Community allotments where households are given plots of land for agricultural use are a common sight in Japan, but what about in the home? Household gardens are a cost-effective and easy way to grow foods such as bell peppers, cucumbers, garlic, tomatoes, zucchini, and herbs such as thyme, rosemary, peppermint, basil and parsley.

A study led by Dr. Zilla Gulyas, a PhD researcher in urban agriculture at the University of Sheffield in the UK found that persons who grow food at home ate seventy percent more fruits and vegetables compared to the national UK average (6.3 versus 3.7 portions/day). This suggests that individuals who play an active, conscious role in their food production are more likely to have better food consumption habits.

Growing fruits and vegetables at home in gardens, kitchens, allotments, or on balconies is a productive and rewarding way for households to maintain a healthy diet and active lifestyle. As summer ends and autumn begins, consider starting a small garden and growing some of your own food.

Click here for the Japanese version.

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