Nature has a powerful impact on our physical and mental health. Spending time outside, especially in natural settings surrounded by plants, has been shown to have numerous benefits for physical health. Here is how spending time in nature and around plants can improve physical health, including reducing the risk of chronic diseases, improving immune function, and increasing physical activity levels.
Reducing the Risk of Chronic Diseases
One of the most significant ways outdoor plants impact physical health is by reducing the risk of chronic diseases. Studies have established that spending time in natural environments, such as parks and forests, can lower blood pressure, minimize the risk of heart disease, and decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes. The natural environment has also been linked to a reduced risk of certain types of cancer, including breast and prostate cancer. This is likely due to the stress-reducing and immune-boosting effects of spending time in nature.
Improving Immune Function
Another meaningful way outdoor plants impact physical health is by improving immune function. Studies have shown that exposure to natural environments can boost the immune system, increasing the production of natural killer cells and other immune cells. This may be because spending time in nature reduces stress and promotes relaxation, which can positively impact the immune system.
Additionally, exposure to a diverse range of plants and other natural elements can help expose the body to various beneficial microbes, which can help support immune function. You can buy plants to make your home more environmentally friendly.
Increasing Physical Activity Levels
Spending time in nature and around plants can also positively impact physical activity levels. Research has established that people who live in areas with more green spaces tend to be more physically active than those who live in areas with less green space. Additionally, spending time in natural settings can make physical activity feel more enjoyable, which can help to increase motivation and adherence to exercise programs. Outdoor activities like hiking, biking, and gardening can also provide a full-body workout, improving cardiovascular health, muscle strength, and flexibility.
Improved respiratory health
Plants release oxygen and obtain carbon dioxide, which can help to improve respiratory health. Additionally, some plants, such as eucalyptus and mint, have natural decongestant properties that can help to alleviate respiratory symptoms.
Exposure to natural environments minimizes inflammation in the body, linked to numerous chronic diseases, including arthritis, heart disease, and cancer.
Reduced anxiety and depression
Exposure to natural environments has been established to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Spending time in green spaces is linked to lower levels of stress hormones and improved mood.
Spending time in nature and around plants can benefit physical health. From reducing the risk of chronic diseases to improving immune function and increasing physical activity levels, exposure to the natural environment can help to support overall health and well-being. So next time you feel stressed or need a workout, consider heading outside and spending some time in nature, and your body will thank you.