Why is it why so many of us enjoy being out there in the garden getting down and dirty?
Extraordinary as it may seem, scientists have discovered that the very earth (dirt) we grow our food and flowers in is actually good for you.
Yes! Dirt makes you happy.
It seems that a living organism – the bacteria called Mycobacterium vaccae – acts like a mood-booster on the human brain.
The organism get’s into your systme when you inhale it during everyday gardening activities. Once it has reached a certain levels in your brain it increases serotonin and norepinephrine levels to make people feel happier.
As is often the case, breakthrough’s in medical treatment often come about by a fortunate accident. The effect was discovered about 10 years ago, when Dr. Mary O’Brien, an oncologist at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London when she tried an experimental treatment for lung cancer.
She inoculated patients with killed M. vaccae, expecting the bacteria — which is related to ones that cause tuberculosis and leprosy — to boost their immune system.
It did that, The Economist reported in 2007, but it also improved her patients’ “emotional health, vitality, and general cognitive function.” Later experiments with mice confirmed the bacteria’s effects; the study was published in a 2007 edition of the journal “Neuroscience.”
What about you?
Have you ever suffered with depression or mood swings? Do you have a tip or story to share about natural remedies that boost your mood? Let us know.
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