Health care professionals typically suggest managing stress by taking deep breaths in and out, but a recent study shows the proper cure may be to focus on the inhale. Researchers have conducted a study on flowers’ effect on stress, and the results show that flowers can significantly decrease stress due to their added environmental exposure.
A recent survey conducted by Wakefield Research discovered that one in four women experience stress multiple times a day, and the University of North Florida’s Department of Public Health’s study, The Impact of Flowers on Perceived Stress Among Women, claimed that flowers make people happy, strengthen feelings of compassion, foster creativity, and provide a boost of energy. The study involved 170 women and required each participant to take a questionnaire at the beginning and end of the trial. After five days, participants were given gifts and divided into three categories: cut flowers, a luxury candle, and no gifts to act as a control.
According to the study, the average stress reduction for women who had flowers in their home was negative 5.5 points on the study's Perceived Stress Questionnaire. The stress levels of each group originally had no differences, but by the end of the trail, the stress levels between the women with the cut flowers and the two other groups significantly contrasted. The study concluded that the lowered stress is likely because flowers provide the opportunity for nature contact.
“There is a growing body of research that illustrates how environmental design positively impacts health,” says lead researcher Erin Largo-Wight, Ph.D., associate professor of University of North Florida’s Department of Public Health. “Now it is both intuitive and scientifically known that adding elements of nature, like flowers, to interiors promotes wellbeing. Our findings are important from a public health perspective because adding flowers to reduce stress does not require tremendous effort to generate a meaningful effect. When life seems to be in a constant state of frenzy, flowers can provide us with a much-needed moment of calm.”
Wakefield Research suggests that 68 percent of people feel stressed on a weekly basis. On an even narrower platform, there is constant stress circulating women’s lives, and research shows that flowers offer a fairly easy fix.