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The Benefits Of Getting Outside: Part 2

Posted by Dr. Donna Restivo on May 2, 2019 7:18:00 AM

In Health Tips, mental health

In a previous post we shared some of the many ways to better our health simply by stepping outdoors or sitting beside an open window. Because nature is bursting with benefits, we have a few more tips that are sure to keep you lacing up your sneakers and going on an outdoor adventure.

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Lowered pain. In what can be considered a double-win, surgery patients who were exposed to sunlight through the windows in their recovery rooms reported much less pain and stress than those without a window, resulting in a lessened need to take pain meds. 

Increase social interaction. Doesn’t it seem like everyone is just in a better mood when the weather is nice, and they are outdoors? Well there is good reason for that, and psychologists believe that being outdoors helps us naturally rid ourselves of social pressures, allowing us to focus on more important things like community and relationships. 

A boost in immune system. Breathing in fresh air is a natural way to better your immune system. The airborne chemicals produced by plants are known as phytoncides, and when we breathe them in, we up our levels of white blood cells, which are responsible for warding off diseases and infections. 

Stimulate creativity. Sometimes all it takes is stepping away from the computer or the confines of the indoors, to get the creative juices flowing. 

Helps Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Even though the weather is typically cold during the winter months when we are most likely to experience SAD, doctors believe that by stepping outside into the light, we can lessen the severity of the anxiety and depression associated with the disorder. 

Aromatherapy. Every now and then it pays to stop and smell the flowers. The natural scents that are found outside, such as fresh cut grass, pine, and flowers, can make you feel more relaxed. So, why not take a stroll through your neighborhood, smell the natural scents, and breathe in the fresh air. 

Focus. Are you having trouble concentrating on that novel that you’ve been trying to finish for weeks? It may not be that the plot bores you, instead, it may simply be that you need a little lift in your concentration. Take a stroll through a nearby park and you will be able to tackle that book or puzzle once and for all. 

Better eyesight. When we stay indoors all day, our eyesight is limited because our eyes get used to dimmer lighting. It is for this reason that it’s important to step outside and allow your eyes to take in the natural light and landscape.

 

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