Living in a big city, it’s not always easy to find a forest — but the health benefits might be worth it. A new article in The Atlantic suggests that living near tree might not only improve your mental health, but your physical health as well:
It is becoming increasingly clear that trees help people live longer, healthier, happier lives—to the tune of $6.8 billion in averted health costs annually in the U.S., according to research published this week. And we’re only beginning to understand the nature and magnitude of their tree-benevolence.
Map courtesy: US Forest Service
Growing up in Missouri, we had lots of trees around. We had a thicket in the backyard where I would enjoy watching all sorts of familiar birds, like cardinals, blue jays and chickadees. But occasionally we would get a bird that didn’t come around very often, like a catbird. And it turns out that my neighborhood wasn’t alone. I recently went home to visit family, and I was amazed and the vastness of all the wooded areas there. It’s no wonder people are generally happy and laid back there!
Here’s hoping you have some trees around you that you can enjoy. If not, hopefully you can carve out some time to visit a wooded area and connect with nature, even if just for a little bit. It may just help you breathe a little easier.
Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park near Santa Cruz, CA
(h/t The Atlantic)