Susan Dalgety: A healthy alternative to campaigning for Corbyn

Somewhere in the back of my cupboards is a half-finished school jumper for my son's first day at school. He is now 41. I got distracted by life, and abandoned my needles for parenting, work and the Labour Party.

Tuesday, 13th March 2018, 6:00 am
Knitting can help lower blood pressure (Picture: Getty)

Now that I am granny, work part-time, and the Labour Party has abandoned me, I have taken up knitting again.

I have had more success with my recent projects. I have just completed a cot blanket for the latest addition to our family, my great-niece Eva, and I am half way through a second one for a friend’s baby, due next month.

I am surprised at how much enjoyment I get out of creating something from a couple of wooden sticks and a few balls of yarn.

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I was even more surprised to read yesterday that knitting is good for you. The charity Knit for Peace has just published a report that suggests knitting should be prescribed by the NHS.

Their research shows that knitting distracts from chronic pain such as arthritis, lowers blood pressure and keeps older minds sharp.

‘Casting on’ can lower your heart beat by 11 beats per minute, and boost your serotonin levels, so dulling pain.

And knitting can even help smokers give up the filthy weed, as it takes your mind off that terrible craving for nicotine.

If only I had known that 20 years ago, I might not have put on three dress sizes when I swapped fags for chocolate.

I wonder what my GP will say at my next blood pressure check up when I ask him if he can prescribe me a pack of double knitting merino wool instead of my usual pills.