Finding stress relief in the office can be as simple as placing potted plants at your work desk, a new study indicates.
According to The Daily Mail, a Swedish study revealed that workers who saw more plants at work had less sick days than individuals with limited access to plants. The presence of potted plants helped reduce fatigue, stress, headaches, coughs and dry skin among employees, researchers concluded.
The findings are based on a study of 385 office workers. The team from Norwegian University of Life Sciences discovered a correlation between the number of plants in an employee's work space and their personal health and sick days.
"There could also be a psychological explanation in that people believe plants are healthier and are likely to evaluate their own health more optimistically," said Lisa Bringslimark, an environmental psychology expert.
Another study, conducted by Washington State University researchers, found that potted plants are specifically beneficial to people who did not have a window in their work area. Dr. Virginia Lohr, the lead author of the study, found that participants were 12 percent more productive and less stressed when they worked in environments with plants, compared to individuals who were in plant-less settings.