🌱 A new study found that a one-hour walk in nature decreased activity in a part of the brain called the amygdala—which translates to a better ability to deal with stress.
For some background…
✔️ Living in a city or urban area is associated with more anxiety and depression.
✔️ Studies also show that a stress-related area of the brain called the amygdala becomes more active during a stressful situation in urban residents than in rural residents.
✔️ This latest study is the first to compare what happens to brain activity during a one-hour walk on a busy city street and during a one-hour walk in the forest.
Here’s how the study went…
🧠 Brain activation was measured in 63 healthy adults when exposed to a stressful task.
🥾 Participants then went on a one-hour walk either on a busy street or in nature.
🧠 The same brain activation test was done again after the walk.
🌱 Results showed decreased activation of the amygdala in participants who had walked in nature (but no change in those who walked in the city) when exposed to stress.
Here’s what it means to you…
Walking in nature provides even more benefits than walking in the city. You may not be able to make it to the forest every day, but walking in a park or on a trail will do the trick too.
Just remember that we may be more powerfully influenced by our environment than we realize, and nature is one of our best remedies for stress relief 😌