YOUR LIFE YOUR HEALTH

Orem Family Reaps Physical And Mental Health Benefits In Community Garden

Apr 25, 2019, 9:00 PM | Updated: Apr 29, 2019, 10:38 am

OREM, Utah — Four-year-old Yannik Foerster is on a worm hunt.

“Say ‘Hello’ Mr. Earth Worm!” he said upon finding a worm.

Yannik, his little sister, and his mom, Katie Foerster, are preparing their dirt at the Orem Community Hospital’s Live Well Garden. They’re getting ready to plant lots of fruits and veggies this spring.

“He’s keeping our dirt healthy huh?” Katie Foerster said as they looked at the worm he dug up. “When you’re gardening, worms are your best friends.”

This is the second year in a row the Foersters are planting a garden at the Live Well Center. They enjoyed it so much last year, they decided to do it again.

“[It’s] fun for the kids to get in the dirt and to get outside,” Foerster said. “It was a reason every couple of days to get outside and do something with them.”

The Foersters aren’t afraid to get a little sweaty and go out of their way to keep the worms alive. They opt to turn their dirt with shovels rather than a rototiller to keep the worms alive. “We like to use the shovel old fashioned way, elbow grease to keep those worms alive,” Foerster said.

Maintaining a garden is a lot of work, but Intermountain Healthcare’s Laura Salazar said the benefits go beyond just exercise.

She said gardening helps people interact socially. They seek advice from each other and find common ground in participating in the same activity.

“By the end, they all know each other and they hang around and talk for hours. And that’s part of living well is that connection to community,” Salazar said.

She said it’s also a healthy way to get some sunshine and improve your mental health.

“Being outside is fantastic,” Salazar said.

Foerster said she notices a difference for her family.

“You can tell your mood picks up,” she said. “On a day when they [her kids] watch more TV, they’re always just a little more like angry or a little more aggressive.”

Salazar said gardening makes you more resilient after trying different techniques and experiencing both failure and success.

“Anytime that you have a plan and you initiate it and you see it come to life, and this is like really tangible,” she said. “Smells good, feels good, tastes good. That’s good for your mental health.”

Plus, Foerster said it’s an easy way to help her kids eat healthy, organic produce. She said her son, who doesn’t typically like to eat vegetables, was excited to eat butternut soup made once a week from their harvested produce last year.

“We just love the vegetables and the fruit. You don’t worry about where it’s coming from,” she explained.

Foerster said most importantly she is excited to teach her kids while they are young.

“I love giving this opportunity [to her kids] to be more connected to the earth,” she said. “They get their hands dirty and really do the things that are kind of dying out in our culture.”

Orem Community Hospital offers about 50 plots to families through an application process each February, but if you are interested in assisting a family as a garden volunteer, you can apply online.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Your Life Your Health

Harmoni Memmott went through seven months of chemotherapy at Primary Children's Hospital to beat a ...
Ayanna Likens

2-year-old beats cancer after receiving care at Primary Children’s Hospital

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, and one 2-year-old in Tooele battled cancer and beat it after treatment at Primary Children's Hospital.
4 days ago
FILE PHOTO (Maryland State Police)...
Ayanna Likens

How to make sure your child’s car seat is properly installed

It's Child Passenger Safety week, and it's crucial that your kids are properly buckled in before you hit the road.
11 days ago
A program at LDS Hospital is bringing support and a distraction from those receiving treatment for ...
Ayanna Likens

Joy and Wellness Program provided support for those battling cancer

A program at LDS Hospital is bringing support and a distraction from those receiving treatment for blood cancers.
18 days ago
Intermountain healthcare launched a new mental health resource that will visit children and teens i...
Ayanna Likens

A new free mental health resource in Utah will visit children in their moment of crisis

Intermountain Healthcare launched a new mental health resource for children and teens. The Stabilization Mobile Response unit (SMR) is designed to go to your home in a discreet way to help your child in crisis. The service is free.
25 days ago
Max Thomas Richins (right) and Dr. James Hellowell (left), the man who Richins credits with saving ...
Ayanna Likens

Ogden man shares how naloxone saved his life

In honor of International Overdose Awareness Day, one Ogden man said naloxone saved his life — and many of his friends, too.
1 month ago
Mom of three, Abby, working out....
Ayanna Likens

Creating healthy habits for families as kids return to school

Summer has come to an end, and school is back in session, which comes with a big adjustment for both parents and kids.
1 month ago

Sponsored Articles

Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Ask these questions before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Cloud storage technology with 3d rendering drawer with files in cloud...
PC Laptops

How backing up your computer can help you relieve stress

Don't wait for something bad to happen before backing up your computer. Learn how to protect your data before disaster strikes.
young woman with stickers on laptop computer...
Les Olson

7 ways print marketing materials can boost your business

Custom print marketing materials are a great way to leave an impression on clients or customers. Read for a few ideas to spread the word about your product or company.
young woman throwing clothes to organize a walk in closet...
Lighting Design

How to organize your walk-in closet | 7 easy tips to streamline your storage today

Read our tips to learn how to organize your walk-in closet for more storage space. These seven easy tips can help you get the most out of your space.
Types of Computer Malware and Examples...
PC Laptops

5 Nasty Types of Computer Malware and Examples | Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Computer and Family Safe

Here are the different types of computer malware and examples that could potentially infect your computer.
Orem Family Reaps Physical And Mental Health Benefits In Community Garden