New Year’s resolutions may make us feel motivated for the days ahead, but many are discarded by the time February rolls around. Perhaps more effective and lasting are slight changes in our habits and environment to improve our health and well-being for the long months ahead. One simple way to do this is to make small improvements to your living and work spaces through the use of houseplants.

Houseplants for Healthy HomePlants, in and of themselves, can make a huge difference in the way your home looks and feels. Why not capitalize on this effect and incorporate plants that may also prove beneficial to the health of those around them? Here are a few houseplants that do just that:

  1. Lavender: This purple flower is famously aromatic, but that smell can do more than tickle your nostrils. Ideal for the bedroom, the scent of lavender has been shown to promote sleep, reduce stress and anxiety, and even calm fussy babies.
  2. Aloe Vera: An easy-to-grow succulent, Aloe vera will help to cleanse the air of formaldehyde and benzene – common byproducts of chemical-based cleaners and paints. Additionally, the leaves may be harvested for the rich gel they contain, a home remedy to soothe small cuts and burns. (Caution: aloe vera may be toxic to dogs and cats.)
  3. English Ivy: Although it will require frequent pruning, this creeping vine is beneficial in that it can reduce air mold by up to 94%. This attribute would prove especially beneficial for those who suffer from allergies or lung irritation.
  4. Peace Lily: With unmatched air cleaning properties, the peace lily has been shown to reduce the presence of many different airborne toxins, such as benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xylene, toluene, and ammonia. In addition to its healthful benefits, the plant blooms several times per year with distinctive large white flowers. (Caution: lilies may be toxic to dogs and cats.)
  5. Holy Basil: A bit more difficult to find in nurseries, holy basil may also be grown from seed. Famous in India as a sacred healing herb, this plant can be enjoyed for its aromatic properties as well as for its herbal benefits. Once mature, the leaves of the holy basil shrub may be pruned and steeped for an herbal tea that is high in antioxidants and adaptogens, wonderful for calming the nerves, and beneficial for gum and mouth health.

Celebrate the new year by making your space feel new and refreshed with the presence of healing flora. By choosing the right houseplants, you may also feel your mind at ease, knowing that your silent green friends are slowly transforming your space into a healthier place.

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