7 Health Benefits of Being Outside
Although the benefits of being outside might seem like common sense, the fact is people today stay indoors more than ever. To motivate you to get outdoors, here are some of the best health benefits of being outside.
The Health Benefits of Sunlight
The most powerful benefits of being outside come of being out in the fresh air and natural sunlight. Even a small amount of time in the sunshine can have a positive impact on your health. Here’s how:
#1 - Vitamin D Production
Healthy vitamin D levels are crucial for your health and the best way to get Vitamin D is from the sun!
Just 10-15 minutes in the midday sun several times per week can greatly improve your vitamin D levels. No pills needed!
#2 - Boost Your Mood
One of the health benefits of sunlight is improved emotional health. Being in the sunlight helps your brain produce feel-good chemicals like serotonin and endorphins. This can give you a sense of wellbeing, enhance positive feelings, and reduce feelings of depression and anxiety.
For the same reason, sunlight also helps with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which is caused by the lack of sunlight in winter months. Getting out in the midday sun on short winter days can make a big difference if you have SAD.
#3 - Improve Your Sleep
Being in the sunlight in the daytime (especially in the morning) helps rebalance your body’s natural circadian rhythm. This helps reset your wake-sleep cycle so it’s easier to fall asleep at night and wake up in the morning.
#4 – Faster Healing
One study found that surgery patients recovered faster and needed less pain medication when they were exposed to natural sunlight every day. Our bodies simply heal better with sunlight!
#5 - Improve Focus and Energy
Feeling that brain fog? Get out in the sun! Better focus, energy, and cognitive function are more benefits of being outside.
- One study showed that students who got more sunlight actually scored better on tests!
- Another study also showed improved brain function when participants spent more time in the sun.
More Benefits of Being Outside
Fresh air and sunshine are usually what we associate with the outdoors, but the benefits of being outside go even deeper:
#6 - The Benefits of Being Around Trees
Simply being around trees is another powerful benefit of being outside. Many studies have shown the positive impact of trees on our health. Here are just a few benefits of spending time in the forest or anywhere there are a lot of trees:
- Improved immune system function
- Lower stress
- Faster recovery from illness or injury
- Better sleep
- Improved Mood
- Increased energy
- Better focus and memory
#7 - The Benefits of Listening to the Sounds of Nature
Did you know the sounds of nature can actually lower stress levels? Research shows that nature sounds can help us recover from stress and reduce anxiety.
When you’re spending time outdoors, take a moment to be mindful of the natural sounds around you. Listen to the leaves rustling in the wind, the sound of birds singing, or the rush of a river flowing.
Hard to find a good spot to listen to the sounds of nature? You can still benefit by listening to pre-recorded nature sounds. Try listening to a recording of a forest, a river, or the ocean to reduce stress even when you’re indoors.