Fresh air, sun, blue skies, and trees – nature has always held a special place in our hearts. There’s something magical about the outdoors, and according to some studies, it can have a profound impact on our well-being. Being outdoors in nature can be healing and beneficial for the body and mind. In this article, we will explore five ways being outdoors can improve your health and well-being.
Lowers Blood Pressure and Reduces Stress
Did you know that spending time outdoors and simply looking at trees can lower your blood pressure and reduce the stress-related hormones cortisol and adrenaline? A study conducted by the University of Michigan found that walking in nature for just 20 minutes can lower cortisol levels, a hormone that contributes to stress. Spending time in nature allows us to disconnect from the demands of everyday life and recharge our batteries.
It’s no secret that nature simply makes us happy. Researchers have found that anxiety and depression notably decrease after spending time outdoors. A study published in Scientific Reports found that people who spent time in nature experienced a significant increase in their well-being. Being outdoors can help improve your mood, increase your happiness, and provide a sense of peace and tranquillity.
Do you have difficulty focusing or controlling impulses? Spending time in nature can help. Studies show that both adults and children who have difficulties focusing are better able to concentrate after being in nature. The natural world allows our brains to take a break from all that drains us.
Helps Us Heal Quicker
Illness can be painful, which can increase stress and slow healing. However, researchers have discovered that people who spend time outdoors recover quicker. A study conducted by the University of Pittsburgh found that patients who spent time outdoors after surgery required less pain medication and had shorter hospital stays.
Helps Us Stay Active
Being outdoors can encourage us to move more. Whether going for a hike, playing sports, or simply taking a walk, being outdoors can help us be more active. Physical activity is crucial for our overall health and well-being, and being outdoors provides the perfect setting to get moving.
Nature is a powerful force that can boost our well-being and health in countless ways. Whether it’s by lowering our blood pressure, lifting our mood, sharpening our focus, speeding up our recovery, or getting us moving, spending time outdoors has endless benefits. So, the next time you feel stressed or overwhelmed, step outside, take a deep breath, and enjoy the healing powers of nature.
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2. White, M.P., Alcock, I., Grellier, J. et al. (2019). Spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing. Scientific Reports, 9, 7730. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-44097-3.
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