NASA Advise Keeping This Plant In Your Bedroom To Stay Healthy
For those who are lazy or forgetful, a house plant isn't the best investment. In my flat, even a low-maintenance cactus would probably die off quite quickly, and they can survive without water for weeks on end.
However, scientists are now saying house plants won't just brighten up your window sill or kitchen table - popping one in your bedroom can also boost your health.
Research by NASA and the American College has revealed that the number one plant to keep by your bedside table at night is ... drumroll! ... the Madagascan areca palm.
Credit: Mokkie (Creative Commons)
No, me neither.
According to researchers, areca palm is the best air-purifying plant capable of filtering pollutants such as solvents from the air.
When it reaches 5'11" in height, areca palm also releases an impressive amount of moisture into the air - a litre a day - meaning it doubles up as a handy humidifier, which saves you heading to town to prod uselessly at boxes and ask shop assistants, 'Is this cheap one any good?'
Not only is it great for anyone prone to the odd sniffle - important as winter draws in, bringing with it the annual overload of snot, ctarrh and associated mucus - but it also helps you sleep off that heavy night out more easily.
Another plant that ranks high on NASA's list is aloe vera, the rather pleasant-smelling cure-all found in soft drinks and sun creams everywhere.
NASA named the aloe vera plant as one of the best for air purification as it helps to absorb cancer-causing chemicals such as benzene and formaldehyde.
More Like This
Aloe vera: loves formaldehyde. Credit: PA
If you have a dank spot of mould festering up your bedroom wall, it might be worth tearing off the ivy from the side of your house.
It might seem a bit early to start thinking about Christmas-themed greenery in October, but ivy has been found to remove 78 percent of airborne mould in a room of just 12 hours. Just imagine all the crap that could have been in your lungs otherwise.
Other plants that NASA have picked out as particularly good air purifiers are dwarf date palm, Chinese evergreen and weeping fig.
Chinese evergreen is one of the easiest plants to have because it grows well in low light areas of your house where other plants won't - so if opening the curtains in your bedroom always seems like one daily chore too many, you're sorted here.
Chinese evergreen. Credit: Kurt Stüber (Creative Commons)
Bringing a plant inside has long been known for its stress-busting benefits - ideal if you live alone in a grimy city, where the closest you ever come to nature is the growth under your fridge.
Now, with one of these plants in your room you can be confident that you're inhaling less mould and paint stripper. A reassuring thought to help you sleep more soundly.
Hang on a second, I was inhaling paint stripper...? That can't be good.
Words: Chris Ogden
Featured Image Credit: KENPEI (Creative Commons)