Biophilia Information: Learn How Plants Make Us Feel

Light coming through the window decorated with green plants.
Image by AnikaSalsera

By Liz Baessler

Do you feel more at ease on a walk through the forest? During a picnic in the park? There’s a scientific name for that feeling: biophilia. Keep reading to find out more biophilia information.

What is Biophilia?

Biophilia is a term coined in 1984 by the naturalist Edward Wilson. Literally, it means “love of life,” and it refers to the way we are naturally drawn to and benefit from living things like pets and, of course, plants. And while walking through a forest is nice, you can reap the natural benefits of biophilia from the simple presence of houseplants in living and work spaces.

The Biophilia Effect of Plants

Humans benefit psychologically and physically from biophilia, and plants are a fantastic and low maintenance source of it. A number of studies have shown that the presence of houseplants can lower anxiety and blood pressure, decrease stress, and increase concentration.

Some studies have even shown that hospital patients in rooms with living plants in them reported less stress and were found to require fewer painkillers. And, of course, plants help purify the air of a room and provide extra oxygen.

Biophilia and Plants

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So what are some good life-improving houseplants? The presence of basically any plant is sure to increase your quality of life. If you’re worried the stress of keeping a plant alive is going to outweigh the biophilia effect of plants, however, here are a few plants that are easy to take care of and extra good for improving air quality:

The snake plant is an especially good choice for a first-timer, since it’s so hard to kill. It doesn’t need much light or water, but it will pay you back with mood and air-boosting goodness even if you neglect it.

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