5 Reasons to Get Outside

May 8, 2023 | Mental Health

With spring’s arrival, it’s as though a weight has lifted. The days are a bit brighter, a bit warmer, and a bit cheerier. 

Yet, coming out of the winter months, we might still feel like we’re in a bit of a slump. Luckily, getting outside and enjoying the sunshine and warmer weather can help in leaps and bounds. So, if you’re struggling, this article is for you. Here are 5 reasons to get outside today!

1. Being outside in nature helps us relax and de-stress.

Do you ever notice how, after a bit of time outside, you just feel more at ease? Research even indicates that getting outside has the ability to reduce stress and boost feelings of relaxation. Other studies suggest that the concept of “forest bathing” or being amongst nature can help reduce anxiety and depression and enhance one’s overall emotional state. 

Thus, if you’re feeling down in the dumps, getting outside (even if it’s not within a super naturalistic setting) can help you feel even a little bit better. At the very least, with zero cost and a small amount of effort, it’s worth a shot! 

2. The sunshine helps regulate our circadian rhythm and increases vitamin D in the body.

Light is powerful. More specifically, the different rays of the sun at different times of the day have an undeniable impact on our sleep-wake cycle. And sleep is one of the most important aspects you should focus on for improved mood and better health. 

Research demonstrates how light impacts our circadian rhythm, mood, and overall well-being. It even goes as far as to say that artificial light may have detrimental impacts at certain times of the day, such as before bed or in the middle of the night.

On top of this, the sun helps our body produce 90% of its vitamin D. Vitamin D is essential for regulating calcium and phosphorous, controlling infections, reducing inflammation, and more.

3. Walking can help with proper weight management.

Most health experts recommend short, daily walks. This can help with healthy weight loss, proper weight management, and help prevent a variety of chronic illnesses. 

The truth is many of us don’t move our bodies enough. We might sit at our desks for the majority of the day, then we go home and sit and watch TV. Even five to 10 minutes of walking here or there adds up! In fact, walking after a meal can further help balance blood sugar levels, reducing your risk of diabetes and other metabolic-related diseases. 

4. It might enhance your longevity!

Many of us dream of living a long, vibrant, and healthy life. Getting outside more might help you do just that! Studies suggest that being outdoors in nature can help improve cardiovascular and metabolic factors, enhancing your overall health. Additional research states that being outside more may predict independence, functionality, and health during one’s later years.

5. Getting outside can lower your blood pressure and improve heart health.

With heart disease being one of the leading causes of death, taking good care of your heart health has never been more important. In fact, small doses of nature may help improve blood pressure and heart health by lowering stress and promoting a state of calm. The key is to get outside fairly regularly!

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