Many homeowners are looking at their outdoor space as a necessary extension of their home. Whether it’s a patio/deck combination, an outdoor kitchen or luxury covered patio, these projects have become hugely popular in providing families more entertaining or relaxing space while increasing their property’s resale value.
But wait! There is another big factor to take into consideration when weighing the return on your investment of an outdoor living environment. Enjoy the health and wellness benefits of being in an outdoor space. This article will highlight the growing body of research on just how much nature and being outdoors is beneficial to our overall health.
Improves Physical Well-Being
Spending more time outdoors can reduce blood pressure, reduced muscle tension, heart rate and even improve sleep. A study published in Scientific Reports found that spending just two hours a week outdoors can cut the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity.
Refreshes Your Brain and Eyes
The Journal of International Ophthalmology reports that the blue light emitted by laptops, cellphones, televisions and other electronics can strain your eyes. Taking a break from digital devices and focusing on the natural landscape can help relieve stress of everyday life and refresh your brain, eyes and reduce tension. Nature heightens our ability to focus while reducing our body’s stress levels.
According to Stanford Medicine, findings published in Preventive Medicine show the more time you spend outdoors can improve sleep quality, especially for men and women over the age of 65.
Enhances Mental Well-Being
Time spent outdoors promotes relaxation, lowers stress, anxiety and symptoms of depression. Your mood is improved by simply spending time outdoors.
Limited Exposure to the Sun Is Beneficial
Evidence points to spending a little time in the sun can increase your vitamin D levels which is linked to better immune function, reduced inflammation and better calcium absorption. Harvard Health reports research that suggests Vitamin D may have protective effects against everything from cancer to depression to heart attacks and stroke. However, remember to wear sun screen to protect your skin.
The Sounds and Sights of Nature Matter
When you go outside, or sit on your patio, researchers remind us to pay attention. You’ll be one step closer to getting those beneficial effects or enhancing the time that you spend outdoors.
Having your own oasis in your backyard makes an impact. A bubbling water feature, a crackling fire, a colorful garden or just observing the birds can be peaceful.
Researchers from King’s College in London recently reported that hearing avian cheeps and chirps enhances our moods, relieves depression, and provides other mental health benefits for up to eight hours after hearing. Another study from Berlin suggests that listening to birds singing improves anxiety, while traffic noise is related to greater depression.
Benefits for Children Spending Time Outdoors
Scientific research shows kids are happier and healthier when outdoor time is in better balance with indoor time. Read a recent blog Kids and Outdoors and learn about the benefits from kids playing outdoors.
Landscaping for Health and Wellbeing
The positive impact of spending time in your backyard with nature is significant. It’s all the more reason to enjoy your backyard.
A fire pit in your outdoor living space is a natural gathering spot where friends and family will want to gather. Backyard ponds creating a gathering spot while water features provide soothing sights and sounds that help you relax and de-stress in today’s busy world. Choosing native plants that help pollinators such as bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, etc. invite nature into your backyard.
Whitehouse Landscaping’s 20+ years of experience can directly help homeowners get outdoors by creating not just beautiful spaces, but functional spaces to feel good in. Contact us f you need any help in creating a more nature-friendly backyard.
10 Health Benefits of Being Outdoors. Prevention
How Does Nature Impact Our Wellbeing? University of Minnesota, Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality and Healing.