This report by Rich Haridy is published in New Atlas. It begins:
“We all know a good, long walk in nature can be relaxing, but a landmark new study from researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development offers some of the first causal evidence to show exactly how a one-hour walk in the forest reduces activity in brain areas responsible for processing stress.
For decades researchers have reported a myriad of mental health differences between people living in rural and urban environments. It’s clear spending time in natural environments can be psychologically beneficial – after all, no one associates a long walk in a forest with stress.
But several questions surrounding the association between nature and relaxation have remained unanswered. Sonja Sudimac, lead author on the new research, said it hasn’t been clear whether urban environments actually cause more stress or whether exposure to natural environments reduces stress? …”
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