Does Nature Really Help Us Relax?

Most of us feel immense relaxation when we breathe in that breath of fresh air on a cold winter day. Or, lying at the beach listening to the waves, or playing in the sand brings us to that care-free state.

Green is also a relaxing colour, whilst studies show that being near to a large blue space, such as the sea or a lake, can be beneficial to mental health. We strongly relate green and blue to trees and water, which is why we feel closer to nature when we walk through woodland or go wild-swimming. Eating home-grown fruit and veg has the same effect – growing and eating your own strawberries, for example, feels much more cathartic than going to the shop to buy strawberries packaged in plastic.

In recent years, there has been a strong shift towards natural living. This includes being self-sufficient, but it also includes using natural remedies for when we are ill. Before mass-produced pharmaceuticals, all that was available were plants and animal products with medicinal properties. Lavender, for example, helps with insomnia, whilst honey is anti-bacterial and was used to clean wounds. Today, products like pine tar, which you can click here to buy, are used to treat everything from migraines to depression. Honey is also known to help treat hayfever, which otherwise has no cure.

Nature helps most people relax; that’s why there are so many wallpapers with pictures of nature out there. That’s also why numerous apps designed to put you in a relaxed state have sounds of nature built-in. But does these artificial manifestations of natural beauty really help people relax, similar to being in nature in reality?

Here’s a great article verifying the relationship between looking at nature and decreasing stress: Nearby Nature Effect