• Sayanti Bhattacharya MD

Take a walk in nature

It is well known that physical activity is good for your physical and mental health. Vigorous physical activity can boost self-confidence, create a sense of well-being and improve sexual health. Symptoms of mild to moderate depression and anxiety have improved with physical activity and exercise, as shown in some studies.

Spending time in nature improves psychological health and well-being too. Feeling connected to nature can improve a sense of satisfaction with oneself, with life and lead to better self-esteem. This connection to nature is referred to as ‘Nature Relatedness’. Even a view of plants and trees from your window can have a positive effect on mental health.

Physical activity and spending time in nature are independently good for your mental health. When physical activity happens in natural environments, the effects are additive. Significant improvements in mood, attention and cognition have been documented. People who walk in the presence of nature were noted to have greater benefits in mood, cognition and stress reduction than those who took walks in urban areas.

Next time you plan to take a walk, try to go to a nearby park or trail. Gardening is a wonderful way to spend time outdoors and get exercise. Brighten up your living spaces with some indoor plants.

Live well and stay healthy.

Dr. Sayanti Bhattacharya MD, MS

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