Here on Vancouver Island, we are fortunate to have by Canadian standards a much milder climate. This provides us with a great opportunity to spend more time in our yards and gardens.
Some of the many benefits of spending time outdoors:
Chasing Away the Blues
Anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues can be eased by spending time outside. Studies have shown being outdoors lowered levels of cortisol, a hormone that’s a marker for stress.
Getting a Boost of Vitamin D
You can improve your health just by soaking up the sun. Vitamin D is essential for bone growth, regulates your immune system, and can help battle depression. An estimated 40% of Canadian men and women are vitamin D deficient, which can lead to osteoporosis, cancer, heart attacks, and strokes.
Improving your Vision
Going outside can do so much good for the health of your eyes. People who suffer from Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), a problem caused by staring at computers, tablets, and smartphones for long periods of time, may find that spending time outdoors can alleviate blurred and double vision, red eyes, and headaches.
Better Brain Function
Spending more time outdoors is also linked to higher levels of concentration, creativity, and improved mental clarity. The attention-improving effect of nature is so strong it has been studied as a method of treating kids with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and asthma.
A Breath of Fresh Air
A deep breath of fresh air can clear your lungs, give your more energy, and lower your blood pressure and heart rate.
Reduce Stress Levels
Being around the nature that is in your garden or yard is one of the best ways to boost health and reduce stress levels, and outdoor living space offers the perfect opportunity to spend more time outside. Studies show that spending time in nature can reduce blood pressure, muscle tension, and heart rate. Giving yourself and your loved ones the gift of an outdoor living area is also giving them the gift of better health.
Strengthen Family Bonds
Another reason outdoor living spaces are so awesome is that they provide the opportunity to spend time with loved ones. You can sit around the fire pit or water features and tell stories or sing songs, enjoy dinner from the outdoor kitchen or simply bask in the beauty of the natural elements outdoors together. Spending time together as a family boosts mental and physical health for everyone.
Boost Your Immune System
Fresh, outdoor air is full of phytoncides – airborne chemicals produced by plants to protect themselves from becoming an insect’s lunch. Breathing in these phytoncides causes your body to increase its production of the NK white blood cells that kill virally infected and tumor-infected cells in your body.
Improve Work Performance
Studies have shown that spending time outdoors can reduce mental fatigue, increase creativity, and even improve your mental and physical well-being. Even the most passionate employees can experience burnout, but spending more time in nature can eliminate some of the contributing factors within their own control.
Whether it’s a perfect spring morning, a miserably hot summer afternoon, or a freezing winter evening, spending time outside can improve your memory and focus. A University of Michigan study found that participants’ memory improved by as much as 20% after walking in nature. If you have a big test, speech, or meeting coming up, get outside beforehand to boost your memory and attention. Before studying or preparing for a meeting, spend some quiet time on your patio to clear your mind.
Between televisions, computers, tablets, and smartphones, Canadians spend a lot of time looking at screens. Those devices often emit blue light – the same blue light found in sunlight that suppresses melatonin production and throws off your circadian rhythm. Turning off lights, and enjoying the crackle of a fire outside (without your phone!) can lower your blood pressure and allows your body to prepare for sleep. Turn off your lights and unwind at night beside a fire pit, chiminea, or outdoor fireplace.
If you need another reason to get outside, a study by the University of Anglia found that increasing the time you spend outdoors reduces the risk for Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, and premature death. Additionally, older adults who spend time outdoors heal faster and get more exercise. Garden, Cook, exercise, or socialize in your backyard for at least an hour a day.
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If you are considering adding or upgrading your outdoor electrical appliances such as heaters, grills, lights, water features, and hot tubs, please check to ensure you have the electrical capacity.
We can advise on load levels and ensure your panel can provide you with the power to support your outdoor living.
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