Here’s your prescription for better health: Take a Hike!
Yes, getting lost (in the wilderness) is the quickest path to improved health and happiness. Check out this article. Here’s the TL;DR excerpt:
Studies showed that just three days and two nights in a wooded place increase the immune system functions that boost feelings of wellbeing for up to seven days. The same amount of time in a built environment has no such effect. Human response includes increased awe, greater relaxation, restored attention, and boosted vitality. Health outcomes on the receiving end of the pathway are astounding: enhanced immunity, including reduced cardiovascular disease, fewer migraines, and lowered anxiety, to name but a few.
Can’t make it to Great Smoky Mountains on your lunch break? A city park or any nearby greenspace will do… as long as it has trees.
Because making your way through a corn maze won’t cut it – you need those happy trees for best results. Here’s another article on that topic. And here’s an excerpt:
“Protection and restoration of urban tree canopy specifically, rather than any urban greening, may be a good option for promotion of community mental health,” write Thomas Astell-Burt and Xiaoqi Feng of the University of Wollongong in New South Wales. Their study, along with a commentary, is published in the journal JAMA Network Open.
Here’s my urban oasis, my daily dose of goodness:
I eat my brown bag lunch here nearly every weekday. It’s two blocks from my company’s office, in the heart of downtown Cincinnati, but the trees are magical.
I’ve never understood how some co-workers can eat lunch at their desk, staring at Facebook on the same computer screen that they have to stare at the rest of the day. I want to run up to them and give them just two simple words of advice:
Get out! Turns out it’s not just a great way to hit the reset button on your day, it’s also a fantastic way to improve your mental and physical health.
So go ahead — hug a tree today. You’ll love it!
And it’ll love you back.