A study shows that the sea treats depression and anxiety and washes away worries health | Essential information for better health | DW

A study shows that the sea treats depression and anxiety and washes away worries  health |  Essential information for better health |  DW

Walking among trees and green plants is beneficial for psychological comfort, as previous scientific studies have shown. But if you want to get rid of daily stress, and recharge your batteries, the best place for that is not the forest, but the sea, according to a recent study published by the German “stern” website.

People who live near seas and rivers tend to be happier and healthier compared to residents of other regions. This is the finding of a recent study conducted by environmental psychologist, Matthew White, from the University of Exeter in Britain. With his research team, the psychologist interviewed more than 16,000 people from 18 countries about their living conditions and their physical and mental health.

happier than city dwellers

However, the current study by White and colleagues is not the only survey that indicates a therapeutic effect of blue landscapes on humans. Researchers about Susana Morato of the London School of Economics and George McKerron of the University of Sussex started a survey a decade ago, which ended up with more than a million answers. The result was: that people among nature are always much happier than city dwellers. This applies primarily to areas with mostly green areas such as forests, meadows and mountains, but especially to coastal areas. On the 100-point happiness scale, coastal areas scored about six points better than cities, and green natural areas were, on average, only two points better than urban areas.

In terms of green landscapes, this is nothing new. It is no coincidence that the Japanese practice of “forest bathing” is becoming increasingly common in Western countries. According to several studies, the intense experience of the jungle, which has been practiced in the Asian country since the 1980s, has a relaxing effect and can reduce stress hormones and blood pressure.

Being among nature brings with it many other benefits to human health. Scientists have been able to demonstrate that we become more alert, creative and relaxed when we spend a lot of time among both green and blue landscapes.

What makes staying by the sea better than walking in the woods?

According to the results of several studies conducted by environmental psychologist, Matthew White, the sea encourages us to be more active. So it is not enough just to be by the water, to feel the positive effects, we also have to feel connected to the nature there.

If being among nature is a free choice and you enjoy the sea breeze, the effects may go as far as relieving symptoms of ADHD, anxiety disorders and depression. In the absence of physical presence, it is sufficient to mentally travel to the sea. A 2017 study showed that people who had their teeth extracted felt less pain when they took a virtual walk on the beach.

There are many other hypotheses about this, as published in an article in “Spektrum”. Perhaps most commonly, the sea is characterized by constant movement and its appearance is constantly changing due to the movement of waves and winds. We can quickly distract ourselves from negative thoughts through vision and noise through the harmony of an impressive landscape. This basically applies to every human being regardless of his social make-up and origin. A study from 2019 showed that even people with low incomes fare better than average if they live near the sea. According to the researchers, the relaxing effect of the sea can relieve stressful and stressful living conditions.

The question remains: How do you feel when you are near the sea or diving inside it?



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