Demanding schedules leave many people feeling trapped inside, not able to enjoy nature as regularly as one may desire. Additionally, a busy home life makes it difficult to get out of the house from time to time. However, the benefits of walking outside every day are proven to help keep the brain healthy. Even if all you have time for is a ten minute walk, it’s worth it! Read this list of four reasons why going on a walk outside in nature benefits the brain.
1. Fresh Air Boosts Your Mental Health
Studies have shown that fresh air can rejuvenate the mind and improve alertness. Breathing fresh air increases the amount of oxygen available to your brain and body, which boosts a sense of mental clarity. Simply walking outside for a minute or two can help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, especially in high-traffic places like cities and airports. Taking a break from the polluted areas and heading for vacations such as paddleboard rental in Santa Barbara will help boost your mental well-being.
People who spend time outside in natural environments have higher cognitive functioning than those who don’t. Students who spend time on a green campus have better concentration than those who study indoors.
2. Fresh Air Strengthens Your Immune System
Fresh air strengthens your immune system. People who take walks in nature have a more excellent respiratory function, which leads to better immunity. You can also breathe in more oxygen and exhale more carbon dioxide, which stimulates your immune system and protects you against infections. Fresh air strengthens your immune system because it reduces your stress, prevents you from catching a cold, and strengthens your lungs. Enough time outside natural spaces can maintain children’s immune systems in urban areas.
3. Decreases Symptoms of Stress And Depression
Fresh air decreases symptoms of stress and depression because it reduces the effect of stress hormones and increases your mood. Students who take a walk outside have lower levels of stress hormones when compared with those who sit inside. People who stay in cold temperatures for a long time have higher cortisol levels in their bodies, which leads to feelings of depression. The fresh air free from pollution reduces the effects of pollution and even makes you feel better about yourself. Spending time in nature helps you release more endorphins, which are neurotransmitters that produce a feeling of happiness. People who spend time near plants have lower cortisol levels, the stress hormone, than those who don’t.
4. Improves Your Sleep
Fresh air improves your sleep as it helps you relax and boosts your mood. People who sleep in rooms with an open window have less activity in their brains during the night, and it leads to better sleep and a better mood the next day. The fresh air free from pollution feeds your brain with oxygen, reducing stress and making you feel more relaxed. Fresh air causes the body to secrete melatonin, a sleep hormone that helps you relax. A study found that women who spent time outside before bed had lighter and more restful sleep than those not exposed to fresh air at night.
5. Improves Your Career Performance
Spending time in nature improves your career performance by decreasing stress, depression, and exhaustion. A study found that when people were exposed to fresh air after lunch, they performed better than those who did not. A study also found that spending time outside in natural environments improved cognitive function because you’re more aware and alert while outside with fresh air. Another study demonstrated that a high-performance university had better students when students spent time outside studying in natural locations rather than in the library.
6. Increased Vitamin D
When out in sunlight, a person’s skin synthesizes vitamin D, an essential nutrient for healthy brain function. Vitamin D actually protects the neurons in the brain and reduces inflammation. There have also been connections drawn to between vitamin D and neurotransmitter synthesis and nerve growth. All of these are essential to our daily functioning, and therefore vitamin D is extremely important, yet vitamin D deficiency continues to become more common each year. Getting out into the sunlight will give you some of the vitamin D you need. Again, even if you can get out for only ten minutes, it’s still worth it!
There are many benefits of fresh air and how it helps your well-being. Enjoying fresh air gives you a healthier mind and body and increases your productivity at work. Take advantage of this free time by sitting out in nature, walking around a park or field, or even spending the morning outside studying. Fresh air may be one of the best secrets to improving your mental health. It helps you sleep better, strengthens your immune system, and increases productivity.
If you want to get more fresh air, many organizations help people connect to nature who want to increase their mental health.