It’s that time of year in British Columbia when the flowers are blooming and the great outdoors are calling out to many of us to hike, bike, camp and swim. Some experts and researchers think that a call to nature is more than just good fun, but that it’s crucial to human health. In fact, since many of us don’t feel that we have a lot of time for outdoor adventures, organizations like the David Suzuki Foundation hold month-long events to encourage people to get some fresh air each day, based on the idea that exposure to the outdoors may help reduce stress, boost creativity and improve physical health.
Some researchers are concerned that young people don’t get as much time outside as they need for healthy development. In fact, renowned journalist and author, Richard Louv, has penned nine books on the subject of the child’s place in nature and he believes that nature is the best way to develop basic problem solving skills and to grow a healthy mind and body.
Human health and happiness is complex and is affected by many factors, but research suggests that the human animal really ought to spend some time in nature from time-to-time in order to maintain optimum health.
Why not try it yourself to see how you feel? Here are some ideas:
- Perhaps you’d like to go try your hand at fossil hunting. We know a few great spots to get started.
- If you are a total math-geek, maybe try planting a Math Bed garden in your backyard, community garden or flower box.
- Are you interested in seeing some of BC’s last remaining first-growth Douglas Fir trees? You can find them and many other incredible trees in West Vancouver.
If some of these things seem a little out of reach, remember that spending time in nature can be simple, like lying on your back in the yard or a park and looking at the clouds. You can go for a walk around the sea wall or even go for a swim in the ocean or a lake.
Let us know in the comments if you feel healthier and smarter afterwards!
Want to learn more about the positive effects of nature on health and well-being? Journalist and author, Richard Louv, will be talking about his latest book Vitamin N at Science World at TELUS World of Science on May 7, tickets are on sale now!