Health

Health is Wealth: Using the Great Outdoors to Improve Health & Wellness

Health

According to several recent studies, it’s been estimated that less than 3 percent of Americans live a healthy lifestyle. And with the current United States population resting at 329.5 million as of 2020, this percentage only amounts to about 9.8 million people.

Most physicians agree that if you don’t have health, then you don’t have wellness. And if you don’t take the steps to keep yourself healthy and active, you may suffer serious health problems throughout life, especially in old age.

We all have the ability to take our health and wellness into our own hands. And one of the best ways to do so is to spend time in our own backyards or utilize the great outdoors to our advantage.

If you’re ready to take control of your well-being and your health, the great outdoors is a great place to start. Here, we’ll explore a few proven ways that you can improve your health and wellness right in your own backyard.

Gardening

Believe it or not, one of the best ways to get a bit of exercise, focus your mind, and improve your overall wellness is to begin actively gardening. And this is actually backed by scientific study.

Being outdoors and around plants not only offers you fresh, oxygen-rich air, you’re also exposed to ample sunlight. And sun exposure is essential for Vitamin E and proper mood regulation. Additionally, you’ll also be performing a focused task. And this helps to improve concentration and cognitive function.

While gardening, it’s also important to implement sound environmental practices such as using organic materials and all-natural forms of herbicide and pesticides. And this is simply because chemical herbicides can cause harm to humans, soil composition, and local fauna.

As such, a few options for natural herbicides include the following:

  • Saltwater
  • White Vinegar
  • Lemongrass oil
  • Clove oil
  • Boiling water applied to root base
  • Heat treatments
  • Hand-pulling

For natural pesticides, the following can also be used:

  • Marigolds
  • Thyme
  • Basil
  • Diatomaceous earth
  • Mint
  • Lavender
  • Lemongrass
  • Petunias

One thing that you should remember about utilizing your natural environment to promote health and wellness is that the health of your environment also needs to be taken into consideration. So when gardening, natural methods are always the best solutions.

Fishing

Just like gardening, fishing also offers you a way to get outdoors and enjoy ample sunshine. But with fishing, you also get an added bonus.

Studies have shown that being around moving water works wonders for the body and for the mind. And this is because moving water creates a discharge of negative ions which the body can absorb.

Negative ions, once they reach the bloodstream, are thought by scientists to increase serotonin production which can help to curb symptoms of depression, reduce anxiety, stress, lower blood pressure, and increase energy levels.

In addition to these simple benefits, you’ll also be enjoying a mostly peaceful experience while waiting for your fish to bite. And once they’re on the hook, you’ll be sure to get a rush of adrenaline and a bit of exercise as well.

Hiking

If you really want to immerse yourself in an atmosphere conducive for mental and physical well-being, taking a hike in your local park, open space, or even around a wooded area near your neighborhood is a great place to start.

Hiking puts you directly into the arms of the great outdoors. And with an oxygen-rich environment, breathing in fresh air, being out in the sun, and walking to improve circulation and cardiovascular function, you’ll be in the perfect environment for nurturing health.

In addition to all of the physiological benefits, hiking also attunes the mind to the natural world. And many holistic practitioners believe that this connection to the natural world is fundamental for human health. After all, we were once dependent upon nature for thousands of years.

Today, we might be largely removed from this environment with our roads, cities, and neighborhoods, but our DNA is still intimately attached to our natural world in many ways that we rarely consider.

Going for a hike not only reconnects you with your natural world, it offers a place of solitude that will likely put your mind at ease.

At the end of the day, if more people were taking advantage of their natural environments for promoting health and wellness, many scientists believe that there would be much less stress and depression operating in society today. And if you have the means and are wanting to take your health into your own hands, the great outdoors is right outside, waiting for you to say hello.

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