In the midst of winter, spending some time outdoors is probably the least appealing activity. But, spending time outside is good for your mental health and can help with seasonal depression. When paired with a physical activity, like hiking or running, the health benefits of going outside increase, and may include lower blood pressure and stress. 

In a 2014 study at the University of Michigan, researchers found that group nature walks were associated with significantly lower depression, less perceived stress and enhanced mental well-being. 

“Walking is an inexpensive, low risk and accessible form of exercise and it turns out that combined with nature and group settings, it may be a very powerful, under-utilized stress buster," said senior study author Sara Warber, M.D, in a statement. "Our findings suggest that something as simple as joining an outdoor walking group may not only improve someone’s daily positive emotions but may also contribute a non-pharmacological approach to serious conditions like depression.”

Not only does being outside make you feel better, but it helps you sleep better, too. A recent study from the University of Colorado Boulder indicated that campers were able to shift their internal clocks to a more natural state by sleeping outdoors. The study compared the internal clocks of those who stayed at home versus those sent on a weekend camping trimp. The at-home participants stayed up later than normal, pushing their internal clocks back, while those who spent the time away shifted earlier.

But camping is not the only way to get the benefits of sleeping outside. The study author told Time magazine that he has been able to maintain his internal clock by going on regular morning hikes, along with keeping the same bed time.

Below are more easy ways to incorporate a little nature into your every day, along with the benefits of being outside. 

 

Source: Fix.com Blog 

See Also:

Thirty Minutes Of Nature A Week Reduces High Blood Pressure And Depression

Quick Health Tip: Eating More Fruits And Vegetables Improves Well-Being Fast​