It’s not rocket science; though science does play a part: rural living has many health benefits. Dozens of studies link the connections between nature and healthy living.
Making a move to the country could very well be the best investment that you make, in terms of both finances and your health.
Whether you have a specific health concern, or are seeking to know just how life in the country can dramatically improve well-being, here are some ways that green space means good health:
Time outdoors equals time healing
The more time spent in the fresh air means more time away from city pollutants, toxins and things that can contribute to illness and disease. You also benefit from the continued exposure to vitamin D, which has been proven to fight disease, kill bacteria and improve bone density and energy. Get away from recycled air and artificial light and fill your lungs with the good stuff!
Immune system strengthening
In the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (2013), scientists found that both children and adults who move to farming areas, whether or not they directly work in the agricultural industry, can increase their immunity and therefore resistance to illness. This is due to expo-sure to a wide range of bacteria, fungi, pollen and irritants. It has been found that living in an environment of high environmental exposure stimulates the immune system.
Your own country garden
Country living means space to grow your own produce. That means fresh, chemical-free food to put on your family’s plates. People who grow their own food benefit from the exercise of gardening, are more likely to cook from scratch and share a meal with family. Even if you’re disinclined to grow produce yourself, the chances are that you’ll have access to locally grown superfoods without setting foot in a supermarket. And those fresh-picked vegetables taste so good, you won’t have any difficulty getting your five a day!
Nature play and mental health
Research indicates that access to outdoor play spaces have many health benefits for grow-ing children, including a reduced likelihood of ADHD, speech delay and obesity. Other key positives include an increased capacity for problem-solving, resilience and fitness.
It’s not just adults who face stress: an alarming rate of children, pre-teens and adolescents are reporting symptoms affiliated with stress in Australia. Though urban life has benefits and many positives too, when it comes to direct access to nature and play spaces, country life has a lot to offer. ‘Grounding’ is a term that means literally contacting the earth via touch, in-cluding walking barefoot; there’s plenty of opportunity for this in rural areas. It has been linked with reductions in inflammation, increased circulations and pain management.
Access to quality services
In Australia, each State and Territory Government offer access to healthcare and hospitals in country regions. It may surprise people to discover the closest healthcare provider to their country town is closer than they thought. Locations and additional healthcare information are available at www.australia.gov.au/information-and-services/health.
If city life is starting to take its toll, consider moving to the country. Your health will thank you.