Fresh flowers and plants may improve more than color in a room. According to new research, pretty blooms can also benefit your mental and physical health.

Apartment Therapy recently bubbled up a 2008 study by the American Society for Horticulture Science measuring the effects of having flowers and plants in a hospital room on a person’s recovery from surgery. The study involved 90 patients who were recovering from appendectomies. Some of them received flowers and plants in their hospital rooms while others did not.

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Fascinatingly, the patients who did have flora in their rooms benefitted from lower blood pressure, lower heart rates, and lower ratings of pain, anxiety, and fatigue than those who were plant-less. They also reported more positive feelings and higher satisfaction with their rooms. Can you blame them?

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“Findings of this research suggest that plants in a hospital environment could be noninvasive, inexpensive, and an effective complementary medicine for patients recovering from abdominal surgery,” the study concluded.

While the study’s findings are admittedly narrow, the wider implications—that plants can have positive effects on a person’s health—are tremendous.

Count that as another win for Mother Nature!

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