Walking is one of the most simple yet powerful ways to improve your health. But just getting outside may not be enough. Research continues to support the many benefits that walking in nature can have.
In fact, walking in nature actually changes the brain for the better. It can also have positive effects on risk factors related to common health issues such as hypertension and heart disease.
Physiomed has created this infographic to help you spend more time walking in nature. Understanding the health benefits it can provide gives you the motivation you need to achieve lasting health.
Health Risks of the Modern Age
The modern age has resulted in a number of stressors that impact your long-term health and well being. This is especially true for people living in cities, where increased levels of stress and anxiety are often seen.
Chronic stress and other mental health issues can lead to more significant health problems including high blood pressure, weight gain, diabetes, arthritis, and asthma among many others.
The Health Benefits of Walking in Nature
Getting out in nature has positive effects on the brain. Blood flow to the brain is enhanced, stress is reduced, and the immune system is supported by walking in nature.
Research has shown that participating in regular activities in nature can reduce the risk of mental health problems by 50%. It serves as a natural antidepressant and may effectively treat mild depression.
Boosting anti-cancer proteins and disease-fighting cells can also be accomplished by regular walks in natural surroundings. It can reduce food cravings, provide relief to the joints, and help you live longer.
The Brain’s Response to Walking in Nature
The effects that walking in nature has on the brain include a decrease in blood flow to the areas that are linked to mental illness. It can also reduce the frequency of negative thoughts associated with brooding and rumination.
Walking in nature also improves cognitive function and memory. It reduces stress hormones such as cortisol and activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for rest and recovery.