How Nature Can Help Our Health
To continue the six part blog series on ways to reduce your risk of Type 2 Diabetes I am discussing Nature and how it can help us improve our health. I have written a previous blog, Nature Walks For Your Health that outlines many benefits getting outside and walking in nature has for our health.
One important feature that we as humans experience when getting outside in nature is a feeling of grounding. Many people experience this when they go out in their gardens. If they swim in the ocean, walk along the beach, hike through the bush. A feeling of grounding - when we feel relaxed, at ease, free of worry and stress, in the moment.
Grounding ourselves in nature could be seen as a form of meditation or a technique for stress reduction. The practice of taking yourself away from distractions. Of activities that spark stress, a busy mind, too many thoughts or emotions. Whether it's your flower garden, your veggie patch or a walk down the street. You are letting yourself take time for you.
Allowing yourself this time out in the beauty that we have in nature helps you to relax. It helps you to clear your mind. To live presently and mindfully and give yourself a break from the daily hustle.
Exercise - moving your body and stress reduction play a considerable role in preventing chronic disease. If you are a busy professional working in an office and living say in a city apartment. How often do you let yourself truly experience nature? Even those of us with a backyard. How often do you go outside and enjoy time there, appreciate it - not just look at it as a big to do list! It is so easy to get stuck in the daily routine and not realise that the hours a week you spend outside in nature could maybe be counted on one hand?
Spend some time this weekend looking at your habits and routine. Are you getting enough sunshine and natural light? Do you get outside during the day? It's very easy in these Winter months to leave for work in the dark and get home from work in the dark. Never having even stepped foot outside in the light.
How do you feel when you are in nature? Breathing in the fresh air? Looking at the starry night? Appreciating the change in seasons maybe Autumn leaves littering the ground.
Take a moment to experience nature and see how this makes you feel? Maybe getting back to nature and enjoying that fresh air will be your new tool in your stress reduction, increase your movement and reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes toolbox?
Some Ideas To Get You Out In Nature
- Start a veggie garden
- Plant a pot plant that you can tend to outside regularly
- Go for a morning walk
- Read a book in the park
- Take part in lawn games outside - croquet, bocce, finksa
- Have a go at a new sport - surfing, touch football, soccer
- Get some friends together for a weekend hike/bush walk
- Take five minutes everyday to literally go outside and smell the roses!