Show 1082: How Does Being in Nature Make You Healthier?

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Quick Overview

Learn about the emerging science of how nature affects our human physiology and psychology. How do you like to get your personal nature fix?

Product Description

When you listen to bird song, smell pine needles or watch tree branches swaying in the wind, what is happening in your brain? For that matter, what is happening in your body? Does your level of stress drop when you are out in nature?

The Nature Fix:

When writer Florence Williams moved from Boulder, Colorado, to Washington, DC, she discovered unexpectedly how much her sense of well-being depended on being outside where she could see mountains every day. Getting into natural environments in the city was much more of a challenge. But even urban dwellers get measurable benefits like lower blood pressure when they can walk in a park.

How Does It Work?

How do humans respond to nature? Why are we wired that way? Williams spoke with neuroscientists and forest rangers from Japan and Korea to Utah to find out about the emerging science of immersion in nature. The more we pay attention to our electronic screens, it seems, the more we need to take in sky and horizons, running water or blowing breezes. Find out if you should go for a walk after listening to the show or perhaps plan a camping trip soon.

This Week’s Guest:

Florence Williams is a journalist and contributing editor to Outside magazine. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, National Geographic and elsewhere.

Her books include Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History and her most recent, The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative. She hosts a podcast for Audible, Breasts Unbound. Her website is The photo of Florence William was taken by Sue Barr.

Air Date:June 10, 2017

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