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Growing Healthy and Fit with Gardening

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Summer is just around the corner and that means it is time for visits to the pool, beach and lakes. Every woman wants to look and feel her best during swimsuit season and a study released this week from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center has just made losing weight even more appealing. According to the study, “Even a moderate amount of weight loss can significantly reduce levels of circulating estrogens that are associated with an increased risk of breast cancer.” A great way to improve fitness and provide your family with delicious, fat burning foods at the same time is with gardening!

Gardening is a wonderful source of cardiovascular and resistance exercise that will help you lose weight, gain muscle and eat healthier according to Mastergardening.com. Anne McTiernan, M.D., Ph.D director of the Hutchinson Center's Prevention Center and a member of its Public Health Sciences Division said “Results suggest that losing just 5 percent or more of one's weight could cut by a quarter to a half the risk for the most common, estrogen-sensitive breast cancers."

While gardening for 30 minutes, according to Harvard Health Publications, a 155-pound adult burns an average of 167 calories. Weeding burns 172 calories in the same amount of time and replicates resistance exercises which helps build muscle.

Gardening is an enjoyable and rewarding way to exercise and lose weight. Raking burns 139 calories, the same as water aerobics. Mowing with a push mower burns 205 calories and planting your vegetable garden is equal to bicycling at 10mph for 30 minutes burning 146 calories.

In addition to losing weight and lowering your chances of breast cancer, all of those great vegetables you have been tending to while exercising will help you slim down even more! A few easy to grow super slimming fruits and vegetables are soybeans, blueberries, sweet potatoes, apples, spinach, and chili peppers.

Spring and summer is the perfect time to get your figure back in shape by using the longer days and warmer weather to exercise outside in your garden.