Put your pills away; a regular dose of gardening might be just what the doctor ordered to see improvements in depression, anxiety, and body mass index, according to a new study published in Preventative Medicine Reports. The study reported a wide range of health outcomes and increases in life satisfaction, quality of life, and sense of community worldwide–all from regular gardening. Don’t believe your ears? Here are X reasons gardeners are the happiest people.

  1. Gardeners Have a Lower Risk of Alzheimer’s

With more than 3 million cases in the United States alone, Alzheimer’s disease accounts for more than 60% of all dementia cases. Recently, however, researchers discovered that the risk of Alzheimer’s disease could be cut by as much as 50% when individuals perform various physical activities–including gardening.

  1. Gardeners Are Less Stressed

Recent studies have shown gardeners are more relaxed, but it doesn’t take scientific data to understand why. After spending long days in an office, dealing with commuting, and handling stressful situations at work or home, digging in the soil is an ideal retreat and a chance to recharge. The sunshine, warm breeze, and sounds of nature trickling from a fountain or chirping from a bird table create an antidote to the sort of attention fatigue urban city dwellers battle on the daily now. Plus, gardeners can even create special “mood gardens” filled with plants revered for the mood-lifting capabilities!

  1. Gardeners Think Better

We tend to be more creative and productive when we’re surrounded by plants. In fact, gardeners regularly have a 36%-47% lower risk of dementia than non-gardeners. Don’t have the time or space to garden outdoors? You can plant containers indoors for many of the same benefits. Make sure you choose air purifying plants for maximum impact.

Gardening is a fantastic hobby no matter your stage of life. In fact, study after study attests to the fact that gardeners have a lower risk of disease, are less stressed in general, and have better mental function. It’s hard to argue with the benefits; gardening is a hobby you can’t wait to try.