Getting outdoors more often is one of the easiest ways to boost your well being. Whether it’s escaping the confines of a building, space in a relationship or to simply feel the warmth of the sun on your skin, all you have to do is step outside. No cost, no equipment needed; just the time and inclination.
1. It Saves You from Nature Deficit Disorder
Yes it’s a thing! Research shows there are several behavioral, social, and health consequences of not spending enough time out in the natural world. They call it "nature deficit disorder", and the simple way to avoid this issue is to put down your devices and plan an outing today.
2. It Improves Your Mood and Memory
Getting outdoors more works like a therapy that is readily available, has no side effects, and improves your cognitive functioning at zero cost. Studies show that people who spend more time outdoors experience less depression and anxiety. It also improves short-term memory and mood. Spending time outdoors is also a great way to decrease repetitive, negative thoughts.
3. It Improves Your Cardiovascular Health
The practice of sitting in the forest, also called forest bathing, may help lower your pulse, blood pressure, and heart rate variability. Getting outdoors in nature means you're away from work and hassle, which will again calm your nerves and lower your blood pressure.
4. It Helps Keep Your Weight in Check
Research shows that access and exposure to nature help keep your body weight in check. The connection is quite obvious actually – you will lose weight because of increased physical activity. Japanese research shows regular forest bathing reduces cortisol and blood sugar levels that may also help prevent obesity.
5. It Helps You Recover from Illnesses
One of many reasons to spend more time outdoors is that it powers up your immune system and helps you fight off illnesses better. Several studies have also confirmed that patients who visit gardens or even look at landscapes often have elevated mood, less anxiety, and earlier recovery.
6. It Helps You Get More out of Your Exercise
Yyou can make your exercise sessions even more productive by taking your gym outdoors. This will help you experience a greater sense of energy, revitalization, satisfaction, and enjoyment.
7. It Keeps Your Circadian Rhythms in Perfect Shape
A new study shows a weeklong camping trip can reset your internal biological clock and make it easier for you to fall asleep at night and wake up early in the morning. Your exposure to natural light causes your internal clock be in sync with nature's light and dark cycle and improves your sleep quality.
8. It Improves Your Mental Health
Children who spend more time in natural settings find it easier to deal with ADHD symptoms. Nature therapy works for adults as well and improves concentration, focus, and work productivity. You can reduce your "mental fatigue" by exposing your brain to the great outdoors. Enjoying natural beauty is another way to elicit feelings of awe and experience a mental boost.
9. It Improves Your Pain Threshold
You can bear pain better simply by looking at scenery. You will also feel less pain by spending time outdoors because it reduces inflammation that is also responsible for issues like inflammatory bowel disease, autoimmune disorders, depression, and cancer.
10. You Need Vitamin D
And by far the easiest way to get a fix of this essential vitamin is to get outdoors in the sunshine. The body makes its own vitamin D but only through the skin’s exposure to sunlight. If you live in the northern hemisphere, make the most of every day the sun shines.
Do you get outside often enough? Are you going to start spending more time outdoors from now on?