That nature provides the resources we need to relax our bodies and counteract our stress levels may seem obvious. Then why do millions of people suffer from such stress-related conditions as heart issues, high blood pressure, and tensed muscles. Outdoor stress relief is one of the most natural cures for stress-induced health issues. In this new age, people are beyond strained. A 2014 poll conducted by NPR and the Harvard School of Public Health found that one in four Americans had suffered a great deal of stress.
Many people understand that being in nature can have a positive impact on our bodies and our minds. Too many, however, ignore these understandings because they do not know the underlying processes of how nature helps. Dr. Doni Wilson, an expert on natural and nature-empowered remedies for stress, discusses how nature is a natural stress remedy that we cannot, and for the sake of our health, should not ignore. Dr. Doni emphasizes how people should embrace nature as a healer. This is particularly important when difficult times impact our bodies in negative physiological ways.
Nature as a Stress Remedy: Outdoor stress relief
Of all the potential stress remedies, experiencing nature is one of my favorites. You can benefit from it simply by allowing your brain to soak in the images and experiences of nature. It doesn’t require any sort of training (it’s automatic) and you can combine it with other stress remedies for an additive effect.
For example, by taking your dog for a walk in the park, you can combine spending time with animals, exercise, and experiencing nature. By practicing mindfulness, or spending time with family or friends while out in the open air, you can create still more combinations.
Even if you don’t actually go outside, nature can be on your side if you bring it inside, such as with plants or even photographs or pictures of nature. Research shows that looking at images of nature has a calming effect on our stress response. And when stress decreases, we also see an improvement on a physical level too – heart rate decreases, blood pressure goes down (when it’s too high) and muscles become less tense.
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