Trees and nature don’t only provide us with oxygen to breathe, they provide us with peace. According to a review of studies, the number of trees in your neighborhood, along with your proximity to a park, plays a significant role in your mental and physical wellbeing. So it may be time to plant more trees.
Incredible Benefits of Nature and Why You Should Plant More Trees
People who live around trees are generally happier, have healthier relationships and are generally less stressed.
“Nature calms people and it also helps them psychologically rejuvenate,” said Professor Frances Kuo of the University of Illinois. “They are better able to handle challenges which come their way.”
Stress could be one of the largest negatively impacting factors for our health. Exercise and meditation are just an example of how people strive to keep stress levels lower, but as many individuals know, another fabulous solution is surrounding yourself with nature. Walking through the park or sitting in the grass may have effects far more beneficial than having a stiff drink to unwind, for example.
Another study showing why we should plant more trees analyzed morbidity of more than 345,000 people based on records from 195 different physicians spread across the Netherlands and found that individuals with a higher percentage of green space within a 1 km radius in the immediate vicinity of their postal code had a lower prevalence of 15 of 24 disease clusters.
Adults aren’t the only ones reaping the benefits of trees, though. Children diagnosed with ADHD have better behavior and focus after a walk in nature when compared with those who exercised indoors or not at all.
In Japan, a study found that elderly people who lived near a park actually lived longer.
In addition to affecting your stress levels and your overall health, trees may affect your safety.
Research has shown that the more vegetation there is in a neighborhood, the less crime there is. Trees could cut crime by as much as seven percent, said one study.
“It actually encourages people to use the spaces outside their homes, which provides a natural form of surveillance,” says Kuo.
Also, landscaping and general care of the vegetation you do have helps lend a “safe” image to your neighborhood and may keep crime at bay.
In general, trees bring peace. Whether you try to explain it scientifically— perhaps through the oxygen they give off you are taking in some compound with soothing properties— or if it’s more spiritual, the benefits of nature are incredibly positive for your mind, body, and soul. We tear down nature to build and create infrastructure, but with all the trees taken down we should plant more trees for balance.
Make it a goal to spend some time outdoors every single day. Water the flowers around your house; go for a walk, or stop your car at a park on the way home and enjoy the view. Don’t always turn to artificial and manmade solutions for your health and mental wellbeing.