Dose up on nature
The therapeutic perks of spending time in green spaces are hard to dismiss. Reduced stress, anxiety and depression, plus a host of other health and well-being benefits are right around the corner.
Spending time in green spaces can have a significant impact on our health. Finnish researchers studying 6,000 city residents found that people who visited urban green spaces 3 to 4 times a week were 33% less likely to take drugs for a mental health problem, and the likelihood of using blood pressure medication fell by 36%. Asthma sufferers were also 26% less likely to use medication.
You probably suspected as much. You can feel the goodness of nature in your bones, right?
People who spend two hours a week in nature report higher levels of health and wellbeing
Just a short visit to your nearest public park or garden can work wonders. A study by the National Library of Medicine found that people who spend two hours a week in nature report higher levels of health and wellbeing. The American Psychological Association reports that time in nature can help relieve anxiety and depression and reduce the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease.
As the fourth greenest city in the world, founders based in Sydney have no shortage of green spaces to choose from. Fifteen percent of Melbourne is green space. If you’re based regionally, you’ll be spoilt for choice. But it’s not proximity to green space that matters, it’s how often you actually use it.
The therapeutic benefits of spending time in nature are almost, well, supernatural!
Time in nature is so effective that it's now being regularly prescribed by doctors. New Zealand has been prescribing time in green spaces since 1998 to reduce anxiety, blood pressure, and heart disease, while in Japan, "forest bathing" is used as a form of eco-therapy. Canadian doctors are even prescribing visits to national parks.
So, what can you take away from this? It's simple: If you're feeling stressed or burned out, head outside and spend some time in nature. Whether it's a serious hike in the great outdoors, or simply sitting in a garden, the therapeutic benefits of spending time in nature are almost, well, supernatural. So kick off your shoes and socks and put your feet on some grass some time today!
*Thanks to the WEF for the wrap up of the science.
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