Benefits of nature for mental health

Did you know that nature, in addition to being visually attractive, has countless benefits for our mental health? Going for a walk in the mountains, paying attention to the sounds of the forest, watching the water run, and listening to the birds singing at dawn can help us reduce stress and increase concentration levels, among many other things. 

Contact with the world around us has a therapeutic effect that strengthens our general well-being and emotional health – science has shown that living near plants, surrounded by clear skies, or in proximity to large bodies of water can even extend a person’s life expectancy. 

A study conducted by the University of Michigan argues that even just looking at a landscape photograph, such as those on computer wallpapers, can help you redirect your attention in times of high stress, as nature “grabs attention from the bottom up.” The effects of clean country air versus polluted city air have also been analyzed, and experts have concluded that constantly breathing smog can significantly reduce lung capacity. 

Thus, escaping to the sea or the mountains from time to time, in addition to being an excellent way to rest, is also a tool to take care of our mental health, emotional health, and the proper functioning of the body. Some benefits of nature are easily within reach on a daily basis: 

Go for a walk and increase your concentration

Several studies have shown that a walk of at least twenty minutes on a mountain trail results in a significant improvement in the ability to retain information. 

When walking through the city, we are constantly on alert, as we turn to the sides to cross the street, dodge bicycles, and observe those around us, which is not the case when we enter the forest. By being able to relax and fully trust our muscle memory, the neural networks rest from constant work, which strengthens them. 

Observe the landscape and relax

Stress is not only a risk to our health, manifesting itself in episodes of insomnia, hypertension, or irritability, but it can also damage our genetic material and cause hereditary conditions in our children. 

You can lower your stress levels by sitting in front of the sea, the mountains, or even in a park outside the city. Just as vacations are necessary for us to return to healthy work life, giving ourselves a moment to close our eyes and listen to the sounds of the flora and fauna in the environment is an excellent way to take care of ourselves. 

Exercise and take care of your emotional health

Living outdoors significantly reduces cortisol, the hormone associated with stress. When you exercise outdoors, you not only oxygenate better, but you naturally tire your body, which improves the quality of your sleep. If you sleep well, your mood will be better during the day, and you will be able to face your tasks with optimism and energy. 

Take care of your eyes

Excessive artificial light can damage eyesight just as much as constantly looking at a flat surface, as we do not give our eyes time to adjust to the different depths of the landscape the way they are naturally designed to do. 

By viewing live scenery, our entire visual system is exercised, adjusting to lighting conditions, the number of objects, and different distances, preventing the need for glasses or surgery later on. 

Of course, these are just some of the benefits of nature for holistic health. At El Grullo Naturista, we invite you to rediscover your bond with everything that surrounds you and treat yourself to a minute in contact with the sun, water, and flowers.