The health benefits of living wall systems

An interior wall artistically clad with living plants is not just a striking design feature – it has a major positive impact on air quality through the filtering and removal of potentially dangerous toxins. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, people living or working in buildings constructed of synthetic materials can inhale more than 300 toxins and contaminants each day, including chemicals known to have a serious impact on health such as formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzene, carbon monoxide and VOCs (volatile organic compounds). This cocktail of chemicals can lead to a range of health conditions.

Research carried out by NASA has revealed that the leaves of office stalwarts like the Spider Plant and English Ivy can effectively trap carbon monoxide and formaldehyde, while VOCs and other toxic chemicals can be removed through the roots of exotic plants like orchids and Philodendrons, or the symbiotic microorganisms associated with those plants.

Energising the atmosphere

Another benefit is that plants absorb carbon dioxide and give off oxygen, energising people, staving off fatigue and promoting a feeling of well-being. This is enhanced by the psychological effect of greenery in the workplace.

Therefore the benefits of living wall systems in the workplace are numerous, with decreased fatigue and ill-health and enhanced energy levels leading to increased productivity and fewer days off sick.

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Nick is a part time techie, full time writer and Lifestyle intern at 5 Articles.

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