Recent research led by Stanford University shows how increasing a persons access to nature is beneficial for overall health. It shows that people that live in cities need places to go to that will increase their physical activity. Places in nature such as parks, lakes, green spaces will help boost a persons physical activity, therefore, increasing their overall wellbeing.
Spending time outdoors in nature can provide health benefits that have previously been unstudied. Since the last year has been shelter-in-place, it is now understood how spending time in nature is especially important for city-dwellers. Being around parks, green spaces, lakes, trees provide support emotional, cognitive and spiritual well-being. They also provide physical activity for people that otherwise would miss if these spaces were not around them in the city.
This study can help city planners design green spaces that would support people’s health to receive nature’s benefits. Walking to a garden, or riding a bicycle along a path or just sitting in a beautiful park help people relieve stress and enjoy nature. Being in nature can help boost attention, memory and creativity and help a person become happier and have a sense of meaning in life.
It has become increasingly harder for people to easily access nature as our cities become more urbanized. This research will hopefully help identify where urban nature spaces are missing and plan to fill in these places with parks or green spaces.
The goal is to provide more healthy, livable places in the city where people can be with nature and increase physical and emotional well-being. This new research shows an important link between physical health and nature that had previously been missing.
To view the original scientific study click below:
Nature and mental health: An ecosystem service perspective