Friday October 18, 2019

Nature Gives You A Major Boost In Improving Your Mental Health

From previous experimental studies we knew that physical activity in natural environments can reduce stress, improve mood and mental restoration.

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Mental Health
Cycling, walking in nature may improve your mental health. Pixabay

People who commute — walking or cycling — through natural environments are more likely to develop better mental health than those who commute less, according to a new study.

Natural environments included all public and private outdoor spaces that contain ‘green’ and/or ‘blue’ natural elements such as street trees, forests, city parks and natural parks/reserves and all types of water bodies.

“Mental health and physical inactivity are two of the main public health problems associated with the life in urban environments. Urban design could be a powerful tool to confront these challenges and create healthier cities. One way of doing so would be investing in natural commuting routes for cycling and walking,” said Mark Nieuwenhuijsen from the University of Barcelona.

Mental health
Cycling can reduce your loneliness, boost mental health. Flickr

For the study, published in the journal, Environment International, the research team examined nearly 3,600 participants who answered a questionnaire about their commuting habits and their mental health.

The findings showed that respondents commuting through natural environments on a daily basis had on average a 2.74 point higher mental health score compared to those who commuted through natural environments less frequently.

This association was even stronger among people who reported active commuting, the team said.

Mental Health
Mental health and physical inactivity are two of the main public health problems associated with the life Pixabay

“From previous experimental studies we knew that physical activity in natural environments can reduce stress, improve mood and mental restoration when compared to the equivalent activity in urban environments,” said first author Wilma Zijlema from the varsity.

Also Read: ADHD May Be Improved With Support And Self- Regulation: Study

“Although this study is the first of its kind to our knowledge and, therefore, more research will be needed, our data show that commuting through these natural spaces alone may also have a positive effect on mental health.” (IANS)

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Majority of Indians opt Physical Wellbeing over Mental Wellbeing: Study

Survey reveals that 64 per cent Indians believe that is equally important to have both, physical and mental health

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Indians
A survey reveals that 64 per cent Indians believe that is equally important to have both, physical and mental health. Pixabay

A majority of Indians, at 75 per cent, are preoccupied about their physical wellbeing, over mental wellbeing at 62 per cent, a survey by global market reseach agency Ipsos has found.

The survey, conducted to coincide with the World Mental Health Day, found 64 per cent Indians believe that is equally important to have both, physical and mental health.

Indians want a clear shift in the handling and perception of mental illness. As many as 64 per cent Indians want the stigma attached with mental health issues to go and they would prefer if it was treated like any other illness. Further, 74 per cent Indians exhort adoption of a more tolerant attitude towards those with mental illness in the society.

Health
A majority of Indians, at 75 per cent, are preoccupied about their physical wellbeing, over mental wellbeing at 62 per cent. Pixabay

The survey also shows a more positive and empathetic change coming about towards those with signs of mental health conditions with 64 per cent urban Indians believe seeing a mental health specialist or therapist, as a sign of strength.

“Indians are recognising that being healthy and well is a combination of both, physical and mental wellbeing and both work in tandem. Also mental health issues are like any other illness and it is alright to see a doctor for alleviating symptoms,” says Monica Gangwani, Executive Director & Country Service Line Leader, Healthcare, Ipsos India.

Indians
Indians want a clear shift in the handling and perception of mental illness. PIxabay

The Ipsos survey found that views around mental health somewhat disjointed and devoid of clear consensus. Aout half of Indians polled (52 per cent), disagree that increased spending on mental health services is a waste of money. However, 27 per cent think it is a wasteful expenditure, while 17 per cent were neutral, 3 per cent were undecided and 1 per cent refused to tender opinion.

ALSO READ: Saturn Transcends Jupiter for Becoming New Moon King

As many as 39 per cent Indians reject exclusion of someone from public office, on the grounds of mental health history, while 32 per cent agree on exclusion, 25 per cent were neutral, 3 per cent undecided and 1 per cent refused an opinion. (IANS)