With rapid development of technology, computers, smartphones, and other devices often seem to completely take over our lives. We spend more and more time indoors, in front of the computer screen or staring into the screens of our phones. We go online to order delivery of groceries, so that we don’t have to go shopping and watch TV in our free time.
Disrupting this pattern, leaving the screens behind, and getting outside have a lot of benefits many people forget about.
When outside you will be breathing fresh air that has much more oxygen compared to indoors air. Air with more oxygen in it means higher levels of brain activity. A study from the University of Michigan claims that people who take nature walks have enhanced mental health and positivity. They also aren’t depressed and stressed as much as people who don’t spend a lot of time outside.
When you spend time outside, your body produces vitamin D. Vitamin D is produced by our skin when the skin interacts with natural sunlight. Our skin does not produce vitamin D from interaction with artificial light. If after reading this you are now thinking that everybody must be vitamin D deficient, you are right. Recent research shows that three quarters of teens and adults in the United States are vitamin D deficient.
This is why spending time outside is beneficial not only to mental, but also to physical health. Various studies prove over and over again that spending time outside has positive effects on the immune system. For example, researchers at Tokyo’s Nippon Medical School conducted an experiment in which participants spent six hours in the woods over the duration of two days. The experiment showed that its participants had an increased amount of virus and tumor-fighting white blood cells in their bodies. This boost lasted for more than seven days.
If you are spending a lot of time indoors, try making it a habit to go for walks every day and see the difference for yourself!