The Health Benefits of Green Spaces
Green spaces are starting to pop up in neighborhoods across the country. Whether it’s a new communal garden or a new park, these additions bring much needed life to our communities. Green spaces can offer a place to unwind or even make food available for those who rely on community gardens for sustenance. Many praise the functionality of community gardens, which not only provide wholesome ingredients but also provide work and educational experiences. However, there’s a less visible effect that’s equally important--the health benefits of green spaces.
Photo by Shane Guymon
Studies have shown that areas more densely populated with trees result in improved health conditions. They contribute to overall wellbeing but seem to be especially beneficial for the mental health of city dwellers. But how exactly do green spaces benefit our health?
- Lower cortisol levels: Cortisol, also known as the stress hormone, has been shown to lower after spending time in a green space. Lower cortisol levels can help counter the negative effects of blood pressure, difficulty sleeping, mood instability, and more!
- Improved physical health: Trees are known to improve air quality by reducing the amount of carbon in their surroundings. In addition, greener surroundings may encourage people to go out more, which naturally increases the level of physical activity. In turn, physical activity and stable health contribute to a less stressful lifestyle.
- Relief from urban surroundings: While trees provide visual relief from concrete skyscrapers, they can also absorb sound. These effects can help those struggling with urban living and its effects on the psyche.
- Lower temperatures: Increased temperatures are a real consequence of climate change. Many of us might have the luxury of seeing this as a mere nuisance, but for some communities high temps can be the difference between life and death. Lower temperatures not only means less heat-related problems but also relief from the heat, which can heighten anger and aggression.
Green spaces can offer much more than a nice view; they provide critical stress relief from modern living. In a world where our day to day contact with nature is limited, green spaces can be one sanctuary that allows us to take a breather from the daily grind.
Bark Potty partners with 1% for the Planet to donate 1% of our sales to One Tree Planted. 1% for the Planet is a network of businesses that have committed to taking responsibility for the environmental impacts of their various industries. 1% for the Planet encourages businesses to practice corporate responsibility by facilitating donations to grassroots environmental organizations such as One Tree Planted. Each Bark Potty purchase you make further supports our collective efforts to reduce the ecological footprint that humans have left on the environment!