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Children playing in autumn leavesAutumn is slowly approaching, and this is why it is a good idea to go outside and start embracing the benefits of nature, whether you prefer to swim, run or hike. It can be as simple as taking a walk with your family for a couple of minutes. 30th September is the National Get Outside Day, and here we have 5 reasons why you should be spending a little more time outdoors and how you can make the best out of this day, perhaps with a simple walk or a full day out with Candy Tours.

1. It is beneficial to your mental health

There was a study done by Stanford University showing that people who took a 90-minute walk in nature saw a decrease in activity in the area of the brain that is associated with things such as depression. Mental health and stress have become a problem all around the world, and these studies are showing how outdoors can help with general well-being. A University in Japan did a study where they found that Shinrin-Yoku (this can be translated into forest bathing) has an impact on mental health. They believe it is because humans have evolved in nature and this is where they can flourish best. Shinrin-Yoku is not about competing or endurance, it is all about just being in the forest. You can spend that time sitting, just laying flat or even walking aimlessly. The important part is taking in the surroundings and being in peace.

2. Sharpening your focus

Boosts in focus and creative problem solving can be linked to being exposed to natural environments. This is why breaks from work and going outdoors improves concentration and productivity. This effect can also be seen in children suffering from attention deficits. There was a study showing children spending 20 minutes in nature led to improved attention performance.

3. Vitamin D

One of the best ways of getting enough Vitamin D is spending some time exposed to the sun, and you have to go outdoors to do this. Many people don’t know why the body needs Vitamin D. It is important because it helps in producing and maintaining healthy tissues, bones and skin. There are many more reasons why vitamin D is important for the body, some being it helps manage the production of insulin and provides support to lung and cardiovascular health. Set aside the time to go outside and soak in all the goodness before winter comes.

4. Physical health

There is a correlation between spending time outside and physical health. The more time you spend outside, the more the benefits you can see. This does not mean activities such as exercise classes and gym are not healthy, but exercising outdoors can have more benefits according to sports scientist. You will benefit more by going outside and running compared with doing it on the treadmill. When you run outside, certain muscle movements cannot be replicated when running on a treadmill.

5. Breathing

There is a good chance you were told to go outside and get fresh air when you were young. This was not just to get you outside. Trees remove pollution from the air and make it healthier for people to breathe the oxygen it releases. Instead of drinking coffee in the morning, consider taking a walk. The fresh air will end up fuelling your body and you will feel great for the whole day.

Hope the reasons above are enough to get you outside and enjoy some time with nature whether alone or with your friends and family. There are different ways of spending time outside, and the good thing is you will always have access to the outdoors, no matter where you are. You can do something as simple as walking your dog around. When going outdoors, it is a good idea to bring along a waterproof jacket because the weather can change at any time.

Post Author: Williams Bova