Just 20-Minutes In Nature Lowers Stress
Taking twenty minutes out of your day to be in nature will significantly lower your stress hormone levels, according to a new study.
“We know that spending time in nature reduces stress, but until now it was unclear how much is enough, how often to do it, or even what kind of nature experience will benefit us,” says Dr. MaryCarol Hunter, an Associate Professor at the University of Michigan and lead author of the research.
“Our study shows that for the greatest payoff, in terms of efficiently lowering levels of the stress hormone cortisol, you should spend 20 to 30 minutes sitting or walking in a place that provides you with a sense of nature.”
Spending time in nature has gained new relevance recently, with growing urbanization and indoor lifestyles dominated by screen viewing having harmful effects.
The data from the study revealed that just a twenty-minute nature experience was enough to significantly reduce cortisol levels.
However, if you spent a little more time immersed in a nature experience, 20 to 30 minutes sitting or walking, cortisol levels dropped at their greatest rate.
After that, additional de-stressing benefits continue to add up but at a slower rate.
Hunter hopes this study will form the basis of further research in this area.
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