Two hours a week in nature to get better

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[EN VIDÉO] Interview: the relationship between humans and nature
Man thrives thanks to the resources that nature provides, but he also depends on them and must therefore make intensive use of them. In this interview, Xavier Le Roux, director of the Foundation for Research on Biodiversity (FRB), describes the complex relationships between humans and nature.

Two hours of nature a week. This may soon be on your doctor’s prescription. This is already the case in Canada. Because nature has the incredible power to do us good! And a little Drexel University researchers (US) reconfirm today. According to them, in relation to nature, people have a eating pattern healthier and “greener” – that is, made with more fruits and vegetables – than others.

The researchers point out that their results highlight: light how a restored relationship with nature could return people to a more balanced diet. They therefore recommend integrating more green to urban landscapes. But also to bring nature into the classroom. And even, to prescribe trips to the greats sky — or at least in parks.

Food and Mental Health

But they also recognize that things may turn out to be more complex than that. The to take advantage of nature can also depend on culture, history and social and economic factors that connect communities to nature on the one hand and food on the other.

Meanwhile, other researchers, from the Boston University School of Public Health (United States), provide new evidence that the presence of greenery in residential areas improves cognitive functions. The speed information processing and attention. Green also limits the risk of depression. All this improves the Mental health populations. Even when they start to age. So what are we waiting for to go green for good?

Ten minutes in nature to reduce stress in students

subject to strong pressure during their university studies, young students fluctuate between stress, anxiety and sometimes depression. A meta-analysis has shown the benefits of the natural environment for the stress of young people aged 15 to 30, whether in a forest, flower pots on a balcony or a public garden. She was even able to quantify the effective “dose” of the treatment.

Futura article with AFP-Relaxnews published on 28-02-2020

American researchers have shown that spending ten minutes in nature can relieve stress and anxiety in young people aged 15 to 30. For this new study, a team from the Cornell University reviewed 14 previous studies looking at the effects of time spent in nature on students ages 15 to 30. These studies were conducted in Japan, Sweden and the United States. They had recorded “treatment” times (the number of hours and minutes spent in nature) and changes in welfare and mental health before and after these outdoor sessions. They also rated participants’ mental well-being based on time spent in urban environment or natural.

Their results, reported in the review Limits in Psychologyshowed that spending 10 to 50 minutes in a natural environment seemed to help improve mood, concentration of the students and physiological markers of stress such as blood pressure and heart rate. ” It won’t be long before the benefits kick in — we’re talking about 10 minutes spent in a natural spacecommented author Gen Meredith. We firmly believe that every student, regardless of specialty or workload, has such duration at his disposal every day, or at least a few times a week. »

A positive effect in ten minutes

Regarding the maximum limit of 50 minutes to enjoy the benefits of time spent in nature, co-author Donald Racow explained that ” there is no drop after 50 minutes, but rather the benefits physiological reported psychological and psychological effects tend to level off after this period. »

The researchers also found that the students just being able to sit or walk in a natural environment to have a positive effect on their health. ” We wanted to keep this access to nature as simple and feasible as possible.notes Professor Racow. While there are many studies of programs that involve more time spent outdoors, we wanted to quantify doses in minutes, not days. But Professor Meredith adds that “ it is an opportunity to question our conception of nature. It really surrounds us: the treesflower pot, piece of grass or forest area. »

We wanted to quantify doses in minutes, not days

The team say their findings show that spending time in nature can be prescribed as a form of treatment to prevent or… improve stress, anxiety, depression and other psychological problems that students experience. The new meta-analysis even suggests the “dose” of treatment needed to produce an effect.

Prescribing a dose can legitimize the doctor’s recommendations and set a tangible goaladds Professor Meredith. It’s different from just saying: “out!” There is something specific for the student to strive for. »

To reduce stress, spend at least 20 minutes a day in nature!

Article by Marie-Celine Raypublished on April 8, 2019

A University of Michigan study found that a 20-minute session in contact with nature effectively lowered levels of a stress hormone, cortisol. A simple walk, or a little time spent contemplating the vegetation in a city park, may suffice. Here’s an inexpensive method to reduce everyday stress.

This study published in Limits in Psychology can inspire healthcare professionals who deal with stressed patients. In a communicatedMaryCarol Hunter, lead author of this article, explained that: “We know that spending time in nature reduces stress, but until now it was unclear how much, how often or even what kind of nature experience would help us.”

To answer these questions, the researchers recruited 36 people living in the city. Over an eight-week period, the participants were required to spend time in nature, at least ten minutes, three times a week or more. Cortisol levels – a hormone of tension – were measured in a saliva sample.

A significant drop in cortisol levels

The researcher points out that “participants were free to choose the time of day, duration and Location their experience in nature. Nevertheless, the authors imposed some restrictions on them: to fully devote this time nature day, without exercising at the same time and avoiding the use of your smartphone during this privileged moment.

The results showed that just 20 minutes is enough to get the cortisol levels. It doesn’t matter whether you walk or sit and watch nature. Nature’s most effective dose seemed to be between 20 and 30 minutes, as this duration effectively lowered cortisol levels. Furthermore, there were also gain but grow more slowly.

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