People are increasingly isolating themselves from nature, and with disastrous consequences. From TV binging to the obsession with gaming, mobile device and smartphone tech, the human race is suffering the effects of nature deficit disorder (NDD).
Driven by Fear & Disconnect
Parental fear of stranger danger and spine-chilling news reports fuel this growing trend, robbing both children and adults of the freedom to engage outdoors. Rather than inspiring wonder and imagination, Mother Nature’s unknown corners and creatures become a source of fear. Weather a hardship to be endured, not enjoyed. Imprisoned by devices within the walls of homes, schools and offices, imagination remains stunted, and feelings of disconnect from nature and our neighbors deepened.
Severe Health Effects
Spending 8-12 hours in front of TV and mobile device screens daily is costing America’s youth sorely. Nine-million are overweight (and rising). With little to no sunlight exposure, 75% are Vitamin D deficient (compared with 40% of adults), causing growth and developmental issues that could be easily alleviated with mere minutes in the summer sun. More than a change of scenery, outdoor greenspace exposure provides proven physical, mental, and emotional benefits – benefits many are lacking. Denied access to the outdoors, behavioral issues, depression, and anxiety to continue to rise, yet few give credence to the cause.
Significant, Recognized Benefits Realized with Greenspace Exposure
Richard Louv, author of ‘Last Child in the Woods,’ avails the many benefits of time spent outdoors the nation’s youth (and many adults) are missing out. Benefits scientifically-proven and recognized by….
- The World Health Organization
The WHO stresses the many benefits of greenspace, particularly in urban environments, noting exposure boosts both physical and mental wellbeing. Greenspace holds the unique capacity to inspire both relaxation and physical activity, as well as opportunities for ‘off-screen’ social interaction.
- UK’s University of East Anglia
UK’s University of East Anglia exposed links between exposure to greenspace and a reduction in not only stress and high blood pressure, but heart disease and type 2 diabetes, noting those with greater exposure to green environments enjoyed overall better health and longevity.
- The Harvard Health Department
Harvard Medical School has published an array of findings on the benefits of greenspace exposure, including the role it plays in healthy growth and development, its ability to promote a more balanced mood, and its association with longer lifespans.
- The University of Illinois
UI researchers uncovered a mere 30-minutes of time spent in a park settings aids children with ADHD, helping them concentrate better in class, and improving focus and calm at home.
- The National Wildlife Foundation
The NWF is a strong supporter of immersing children in nature, recommending a daily ‘Green Hour’ for the entire family.
Essential Physical & Mental Benefits
Cultivating the mind, body, and soul, time outside immersed in nature offers innumerable benefits for children, as well as adults. Studies agree, children who spend more time outside are happier, smarter, and more confident than those who spend more time indoors. ‘Nature smart’ children showcase improved cognitive function, experience less anxiety, and are more focused, achieving significantly higher test scores. How is this possible? Time spent in nature stimulates imagination and creativity, enhancing reasoning and observation. Exposure to nature stimulates and broadens the senses, enriching daily life. ‘Green time’ supports increased emotional and intellectual development, helping fight depression and anxiety and supporting healthy social interaction.
Indulge in an Hour of Power that’s Sunlit, Not Backlit
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