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Why You Should Spend More Time Outside

By Sara Butler

It’s a great time of year to get outside and soak up the sunshine. Plus, you can’t go wrong with a little fresh air! But just because the weather is nice right now doesn’t mean you shouldn’t strive to make time to get outside all year long. Researchers have begun to understand just how good spending time outside is for you, and how it can help to improve your health and overall wellness just by stepping outside and enjoying the day. If you need more convincing, here are a few reasons you should strive to go outdoors more!

It Helps Reduce Stress

You probably find yourself being less tense when you’re at the park – and that’s not all in your head. Studies have found that spending time in the great outdoors without your devices can help reduce stress. That reduction in stress helps to lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which also helps to reduce blood pressure and heart rate.

It Reduces Negative Self-Talk

Sometimes it can be hard to ignore that little negative voice in your head that tells you you’re not enough – not smart enough, not fit enough, not talented enough. That is a phenomenon scientists call rumination, and you might be able to silence it with a little nature!

The National Academy of Science published a study that found that people who went on a 90-minute hike outside reported less negative self-talk. So, silence those voices with a nice stroll where you focus on the beauty of the great outdoors!

It Helps Reduce Anxiety

One of the biggest impacts being outside can have is reduced levels of anxiety. This may have to do with evolution, too. See, your ancient ancestors associated open spaces with lack of predators, so they tend to have a restorative effect on the body even if you don’t have to worry any longer about being attacked by a saber-tooth tiger.

It Improves Your Mood

Taking a walk outside has been found to boost vitality and vigor, which is just a fancy way of saying that it puts you in a good mood. Researchers aren’t really sure if this boost is due to a decrease in bad feelings or an increase in good ones, but in the end, if you’re happy that’s all that really matters!

So next time you're in doubt, go outside and get some sunshine! It'll improve your outlook on life!

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Creve Coeur, Mo. 


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