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Friday, 23 August 2019

How to obtain super health benefits spending time outdoors and within nature


No doubt you must have felt a world of difference between when you were holed in somewhere for hours on end and when you find yourself outdoors – like in the garden, beach or park, when you feel fresh air, and natural aroma fills your system. Expert studies have shown that you need to spend nothing less than two hours weekly in nature so you can be on your way to total health and wellbeing. 
You should be one with nature (Source: Google images)
In a recent study it was discovered that people who devoted at least 2 hours in and around nature each week have a very high possibility of showing up with good health and higher psychological wellbeing far and above people who are never in the habit of visiting nature in an average week. The study which was headed by the University of Exeter, and published in Scientific Reports, nevertheless, declared that no such benefits were seen regarding those who visited natural settings like town parks, woodlands, country parks and beaches without spending up to 2 hours within a week.
The research which was funded by NIHR, made use of records obtained from almost 20,000 people in England and discovered that it was not relevant whether the 2 hours was realised within a particular visit or spread over many shorter visits. It as well discovered that the 2 hour time frame was applicable to both men and women, including adolescents and kids no matter their occupation, race or status, and not minding their state of health or conditions.
Enjoy the beach and the awe (Source: Google images)

The leader of the study team, Dr. Mat White, of the University of Exeter Medical School, remarked that: "It's well known that getting outdoors in nature can be good for people's health and wellbeing, but until now we've not been able to say how much is enough. The majority of nature visits in this research took place within just two miles of home so even visiting local urban greenspaces seems to be a good thing. Two hours a week is hopefully a realistic target for many people, especially given that it can be spread over an entire week to get the benefit."
Great indications are rife that just living in a greener neighbourhood can add to your wellbeing, for example air pollution is reduced. Professor Terry Hartig of Uppsala University in Sweden, Co-author of the study added: "There are many reasons why spending time in nature may be good for health and wellbeing, including getting perspective on life circumstances, reducing stress, and enjoying quality time with friends and family. The current findings offer valuable support to health practitioners in making recommendations about spending time in nature to promote basic health and wellbeing, similar to guidelines for weekly physical."
Commune with nature (Source: Google images) 

In another study from the University of East Anglia and published in the journal Environmental Research, it is observed that spending time around nature or outdoors has immense health gains.
The new study shows that exposure to greenspace lessens the danger of contracting type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, premature death, preterm birth, stress, and high blood pressure. For this reason therefore, populations highly exposed to greenspace have a more likelihood to generally report good health going by a worldwide statistics involving more than 290 million people.
"Spending time in nature certainly makes us feel healthier, but until now the impact on our long-term wellbeing hasn't been fully understood, said Caoimhe Twohig-Bennett, head of the team from UEA's Norwich Medical School.
"We gathered evidence from over 140 studies involving more than 290 million people to see whether nature really does provide a health boost."
They took account of records from 20 countries comprising the UK, the US, Spain, France, Germany, Australia and Japan, etc. where Shinrin yoku or 'forest bathing' is already a common practice.
"We found that spending time in, or living close to natural green spaces, is associated with diverse and significant health benefits. It reduces the risk of type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, premature death, and preterm birth, and increases sleep duration.
"People living closer to nature also had reduced diastolic blood pressure, heart rate and stress. In fact, one of the really interesting things we found is that exposure to greenspace significantly reduces people's levels of salivary cortisol -- a physiological marker of stress.
"This is really important because in the UK, 11.7 million working days are lost annually due to stress, depression or anxiety."
Enjoy freshness and no pollution with it (Source: Google images)

"Forest bathing is already really popular as a therapy in Japan -- with participants spending time in the forest either sitting or lying down, or just walking around. Our study shows that perhaps they have the right idea!
"Although we have looked at a large body of research on the relationship between greenspace and health, we don't know exactly what it is that causes this relationship.
"People living near greenspace likely have more opportunities for physical activity and socialising. Meanwhile, exposure to a diverse variety of bacteria present in natural areas may also have benefits for the immune system and reduce inflammation.
"Much of the research from Japan suggests that phytoncides -- organic compounds with antibacterial properties -- released by trees could explain the health-boosting properties of forest bathing."
Study Co-author Prof. Andy Jones, also from UEA, said: "We often reach for medication when we're unwell but exposure to health-promoting environments is increasingly recognised as both preventing and helping treat disease. Our study shows that the size of these benefits can be enough to have a meaningful clinical impact."
The team looks forward to doctors and other healthcare experts endorsing their findings for treatment of patients – spending more time in greenspace and natural environments.
"We hope that this research will inspire people to get outside more and feel the health benefits for themselves. Hopefully our results will encourage policymakers and town planners to invest in the creation, regeneration, and maintenance of parks and greenspaces, particularly in urban residential areas and deprived communities that could benefit the most," stated Twohig-Bennett.

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