8 Reasons to Get Outside

I love being outside and spending time in nature. I spend some time outdoors almost every day, usually walking — rain, shine, snow, fog… doesn’t matter! Even when I plan trips, I plan around nature (and good vegan food!).

I encourage you to get outside, get some daylight exposure, and spend some time in blue-green spaces (a garden, forest, mountain, lake, ocean, greenhouse etc.). If you need some reasons to do so, they’re listed below some pictures I took from a trip to the Bruce Peninsula this year:

sunrise over a lake with a crescent moon in the sky
Blue water under a blue sky with white cliffs and green trees on the right side
Dr. Anne in a pink jacket in a lush green forest

  1. Regulates cortisol (our stress hormone) levels
  2. Decreases blood pressure
  3. Improves mood and mental health — anxiety and depression scores
  4. May support vitamin D levels (depending on sunlight exposure, time of year, genetics etc.)
  5. Improves pain (tolerance)
  6. Regulates our circadian rhythm/biological clock
  7. Improves sleep quality
  8. Provides a chance to be mindful, offering perspective on life

Most of these reasons stem from research done on the practice of forest-bathing, from the Japanese “shinrin yoku”. So, get outside, folks; even a few minutes can be helpful!