A new study shows that spending 10 minutes in the outdoors a few times a week can help boost your health.
Numerous studies have proven that spending time in the outdoors can yield fantastic improvements to your health. What no one had looked into until now is just how long you have to spend outside before those benefits kick in.
In a new study by MaryCarol Hunter, University of Michigan, and Dr. Marc Berman, University of Chicago, focused specifically on that topic. Their study showed that being outside 10 minutes a day at least two to three times per week was enough to boost your mental health.
The best part is you don’t even have to make time to travel to some remote area to do so. Just strolling through your backyard, local park, or even a green house is all that is required.
Their study is a part of a much larger plan with the TKF Foundation to help integrate more green areas into urban landscapes during city design processes. These spaces will provide people the chance to escape the concrete and reap the restorative benefits our bodies need from green areas to stay healthy.
To reach their results, Hunter had voluntary subjects spend at least 10 minutes in nature two and a half times per week. They would then answer various questions before and after about how they felt about their mental well-being via a specially-created monitoring app.
Saliva samples were also taken to measure cortisol levels, which are released from adrenal glans as a sign of stress. The samples were compared with the data entered by the participants for a final result.
The final data concluded that 10 minutes was plenty for nature to have a positive effect. Subjects reported having better focus, happier moods, more energy, and less stress.
Hunter and Dr. Berman are continuing their study to see if they can figure out exactly what causes the changes within the body. Things like terrain, form, open areas, security, and accessibility are all factors that the researchers are further testing.