3 Reasons Why Being Outside is Good for You

We’ve all been there. It’s a gorgeous day outside and all you want to do is curl up on the couch with a good book (or Netflix show). Or maybe you’ve been stuck at your desk all day and the only thing that sounds appealing is going home and crashing on the couch. This will sound all too familiar for many of us, with research suggesting that the average American spends 87% of their lives indoors.

But did you know that spending time outside can actually be good for you? To enjoy the great outdoors, you don’t even have to set aside an hour for a brisk walk – spending just a short period of time out of the house can have so many positive effects on your body. Here are 3 Reasons Why Being Outside is Good for You!

1. Spending Time Outside Can Improve Your Mood

If you’re feeling stressed, anxious, or down, going for a walk in nature can help. According to one study, participants who took a 90-minute walk in a natural area experienced lower levels of useless cogitation (a risk factor for depression) and reported feeling more vitality than those who walked in an urban area. So next time you’re feeling low, take yourself on a journey to your nearest park instead of reaching for another cup of coffee.

2. Being Outside Can Give You a Boost of Energy

If you’re struggling to stay awake during your afternoon meeting or find yourself hitting a wall around 3pm, step outside for some fresh air. Research has shown that spending time outside can increase energy levels. One possible explanation is that being in nature gives us a break from technology, which can be mentally draining. Sunlight also provides a boost to our bodies’ serotonin levels, which can affect our mood, behavior and even motor skills.

A quick recharge out in the fresh air will help you return to your desk more focused, ready to tackle those tasks you’ve been putting off all day. If you can’t step away from work for a long period of time, even taking a quick walk around the block can suffice.

3. Exposure to Sunlight can Improve Your Quality of Sleep 

It may sound counter-intuitive that exposure to more sunlight can actually have a positive impact on your sleep. But lack of sunlight exposure during the daytime can lead to difficulty sleeping at night.

This is because sunlight helps to regulate our circadian rhythms, or our internal clocks. When we are exposed to sunlight during the daytime, it signals to our bodies that it is time to be awake and alert. So if you find yourself tossing and turning at night, try getting some daylight during the day – go for a walk on your lunch break or sit by the window in your office.

Get outdoors! So, these are just a few reasons why spending time outside is good for you – there are many more. So next time you’re debating whether to go for a hike or stay in bed, remember that being outside can improve your mood, give you more energy, and even help you sleep better at night. Your mind and body will thank you for it!

Do you get outdoors enough? Let us know in the comments below and join in the conversation on FacebookTwitter & Instagram

Jennifer Dawson

Jennifer Dawson is an experienced freelance writer who specializes in food and nutrition. Working in fitness marketing previously gave her a good feel for the industry and since going freelance she has been able to explore her preferred topic areas such as diet types, nutrition and food. Outside of work, Jen enjoys traveling, swimming and spending time with her young family.

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