10 Unexpected Benefits Of Spending Time In Nature
A little fresh air, the sun on our skin, bare feet in the moist grass: spending time outside can bring so many small pleasures, making us feel refreshed and revived. Whether it means sitting in your balcony sipping tea or going for trekking in the Himalayas, finding time to spend outdoors has lots of benefits. Here are a few for you:
1) Improves short term memory
Have you ever thought that spending time with the flowers and trees can actually improve your memory? The University of Michigan conducted a study that revealed students who regularly went for a nature walk actually had a better memory to retain information for longer.
2) Reduces stress
The world is flooded by digital media. Take some time to unplug the screen and go outside in nature which can do wonders for reducing stress. Nature has a calming effect on our brains, even if it means going outside for just five minutes each day. As an added bonus, outdoor exercise, like going for a walk, hiking, and so forth, gets the blood flowing and heart pumping, another way to lower stress levels.
3) Increases levels of vitamin D
Today if you go for a test to check your vitamin D level, your report will say that you have a deficiency of vitamin D. I know too much sun can damage your skin and possibly lead to cancer. Studies show that getting 15 to 20 minutes a day (especially in the morning hours) of sunshine will allow your body to absorb vitamin D, which helps strengthen bones and reduce the risk of cancer, type 1 diabetes, and multiple sclerosis.
4) Improves sleep
Spending time in natural light helps our bodies regulate sleep patterns better. When the sun goes down, our brains will release the right levels of melanin to help get a good night’s sleep.
5) Strengthens the immune system
Research has shown that going outdoors and getting enough sunlight can help boost the immune system too. Make sure to take a little stroll outside or enjoy a bit of fun outdoors to help fight disease and stay healthy.
6) Increases happiness
You can find all kinds of different activities outdoors for all fitness levels and preferences. Whether it means going for a swim in the sea, taking the dog for a walk in the park, or mountain biking, finding outdoor activities that we enjoy will boost your mood and help to feel happier. Plus spending time in nature promotes mental well-being.
7) Reduces inflammation
Inflammation in the body can lead to all sorts of disorders, from depression and cancer to autoimmune diseases. A study demonstrated that participants who spent a bit of time each week walking in the woods experienced lower levels of inflammation in the body.
8) Improves vision
We spend a lot of time looking at screens, which can damage eyesight. Going outside gives our eyes a break from staring at a computer, television, or smartphone. Australian scientists even found that children who spend time outdoors reduce the risk of developing myopia later in life.
9) Inspires creativity
Nature comes in so many colors, from orange-sky sunsets to seafoam green waters and rose-colored gardens. Spending time outside gives a chance to get inspired by all the gorgeous sights, smells, and sounds of the outdoors. Science backs that up, too, showing that spending time outside actually helps get our creative juices flowing.
10) Develops a deeper sense of spirituality
Going for a long walk in a park on your own gives you an opportunity to be with yourself. You feel more meditative. Spending time in nature helps us live in the moment as we breathe in the air, listen to the sound of the birds chirping, or feel the grass on our feet. Nature can even teach valuable lessons and reveal metaphors to help us connect with our spirituality. The changes of the season reflect the peaks and valleys we go through in life. Meanwhile, a coursing river reminds us of our need to “go with the flow” and navigate the waters of life, so to speak.
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