Doctors are urging patients to not only exercise but to take it outside. Doctors are trying everything in their power to help people ditch the treadmill for nature walks. Faced with a working population that spends hours on end on the computer screens only to get glued to their T.V sets in the evening, the struggle for such practitioners is real. Such sedentary lives coupled with unhealthy eating habits have led to ballooning rates of obesity, a pathway to other life-threatening complications.
Drug: Exercise in Liberty State Park
Dosage: 45-60 min of running or walking
Directions: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and possibly Sundays at 7 am
The above is just an example of some of the famous prescriptions causing waves across the medical fraternity in combating obesity among other ailments. Is the green prescription just a gimmick, or will it take off? Your guess is as good as mine. Time will tell. But the real question remains- Why are doctors encouraging us to take it outside? Read on.
A Harder Work out Regime
Your body encounters a constantly changing regime when working out outside. Whether running, walking or riding a traditional bike or a motorized bicycle, your body needs to adapt to the ever-changing environment to keep up with the minor changes such as inclines, obstacles, and bumps. It means your body works harder compared to running on a treadmill or a cycling machine.
Short Term Memory Improvement
Taking a stroll in nature could improve one’s short term memory. A research study on Michigan students confirmed this as they put two groups of students on different paths. One group got tasked with walking in an arboretum while the other took a city street. When the memory test results came out, the group that took the arboretum walk registered a higher score by 20% on their short term memory test compared to their counterparts.
A similar test conducted on depressed individuals showed an improvement in their short term memory for those who took the nature walk as compared to those in an urban setting.
Combat Mental Fatigue
Sometimes, our minds tend to give up on us due to work-related pressures. Researchers claim that our minds get restored to its original state if it sputters to a halt by exposing it to refreshing and rejuvenating environments. Such environments typically get found in great outdoor environments.
Helps in Fighting Anxiety and Depression
A simple nature walk can aide in reducing one’s level of anxiety, depression, and stress. It is useful when such walks get combined with little bouts of periodic exercises. Conventional medicines also use such walks and deem it as clinically useful to treat severe depressive disorders.
No membership fee
The outdoors belongs to every one of us. Doctors advocate the use of nature while exercising as this is among the rarest places where we can get clean, fresh air and a free dose of vitamin D. O top of that, the membership is also free. Maybe you’re wondering what the connection between free membership and health is. Well, gym membership costs can add to the plethora of your financial worries affecting your mental state. Maybe it’s time you took the free membership option.
Outdoors Prevent Cancer and Boosts Immunity
Although tests are still on-going, preliminary reports indicate that exposure to nature increases one’s ability to produce anti-cancer proteins that may last up to seven days after interacting with nature. “Shinrin-Yoku” or forest bathing, known by many in Japan, is considered a form of preventive medicine. Studies conducted showed that areas with large or dense forest covers had the least mortality rates, particularly when it came to cancer.
The forest anti-cancer properties or effects in bodies with dense forest covers are also an indicative sign of an increased immune system, which aids in thwarting minor illnesses such as flu and colds, among other diseases.
It doesn’t come as a surprise that associating with the outdoors pays handsomely by lowering one’s chances of having an early death since such benefits work to our advantage.
Whether cycling, using motorized bicycles, running, or walking, the point is, interacting with nature pays off when it comes to health and overall well being. As Reiki finds its way in modern medicine, nature also hasn’t been left behind and is increasingly being prescribed for our well being.