For the longest time we have taken time to get outside, reflect, slow down and just be... But as society strives to evolve we have seemed to put time in nature on the back burner, this has led to more isolation, more stress and an increase in internal chatter...
"Nature has always been a source of inspiration, wonder and rejuvenation. But did you know that spending time in nature can also benefit your health and well-being? Well it does and you need to run to your nearest forest now!"
Studies have shown that being in nature can have positive effects on both your mental and physical health. In this article, we'll explore the science behind this connection and show you why getting outside and into nature is so important.
It Effects Our Mental Health With a Boost
Spending time in nature can significantly reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression, and stress. Research has shown that nature environments have a calming effect on the brain, reducing cortisol levels and increasing the production of endorphins, which are natural mood boosters. In fact, just being in a forest environment for a few hours has been shown to reduce stress levels, improve mood and overall well-being.
Nature has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health through various mechanisms.
Neurological Studies: Studies have shown that exposure to nature can positively impact the brain and nervous system by reducing levels of the stress hormone cortisol, decreasing inflammation, and promoting overall relaxation. It has also been shown to increase attention and cognitive functioning.
The Spiritual Effect: For many people, spending time in nature can bring a sense of spiritual connection and provide a space for reflection, mindfulness, and introspection. Engaging with nature can also provide a sense of meaning and purpose, helping to reduce stress and anxiety.
Studies Shown: There have been numerous studies on the relationship between nature and mental health. For example, a study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology found that exposure to green spaces was associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety. Another study found that participants who took a 90-minute walk in a natural environment showed decreased activity in the part of the brain associated with negative emotions and increased activity in the part of the brain associated with positive emotions.
"Nature can be compared to a "reset button" for the mind and body. Just as rebooting a computer can improve its performance, spending time in nature can help to clear the mind, reduce stress and anxiety, and improve overall mental well-being."
Adds in Physical Health Benefits
Nature isn't just good for your mind, it's good for your body too. Spending time outside can improve cardiovascular health, lower blood pressure and boost immunity. And if you're having trouble sleeping, spending time in nature can help regulate your circadian rhythm, leading to better sleep patterns and improved health.
Nature has been shown to have a positive impact on physical health through various mechanisms.
Neurological Studies: Studies have shown that exposure to nature can positively impact the brain and nervous system by reducing stress and promoting relaxation, which in turn can improve physical health. For example, nature has been shown to lower heart rate and blood pressure, reduce muscle tension, and improve overall cardiovascular function.
The Spiritual Effects: Spending time in nature can bring a sense of spiritual connection and provide a space for reflection and introspection, which can have a positive impact on overall health and well-being. Engaging with nature can also provide a sense of meaning and purpose, helping to reduce stress and anxiety, which in turn can have physical health benefits.
Studies Shown: There have been numerous studies on the relationship between nature and physical health. For example, a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that people who lived near green spaces had lower rates of obesity and physical inactivity. Another study found that participants who took a walk in a natural environment had a significant improvement in overall physical and mental health.
"Picture this nature can be compared to a "natural gym" for the body. Just as exercise can improve physical health, spending time in nature can help to improve physical health by promoting relaxation, reducing stress, and increasing physical activity."
Why It's Really Important for Everyone
Spending time in nature can have positive benefits for both professionals and individuals in their personal lives.
It provides a break from the fast-paced, technology-filled world and allows for quiet reflection and rejuvenation. Whether you're feeling stressed, anxious or just in need of a reset, spending time in nature can help improve your overall health and well-being.
Nature is more than just a beautiful view, it's a powerful tool for improving your health and happiness. So, grab a friend, lace up your shoes and get outside. Your body and mind will thank you!
Chris is a Certified Personal Trainer, Strength and Conditioning Coach, Sports Nutrition Advisor, Breathing Performance Coach, Cognitive Behavioural Therapist Coach, Over 10 years experience in the health and fitness industry, while also running his own businesses since 2014 allowing him to implement and practice tools that allowed him to thrive in life.
In the past Chris experienced first hand on how to overcome his own severe anxiety and depression through changing lifestyle habits and behaviours through holistic health.