Are you affected by any of these symptoms?
- Always tired
- Constant headaches
- Toss and turn all night
- Aches and pains
- Just can’t turn your frown upside down
Maybe you are a victim of chronic stress. The human body responds to stress by releasing hormones and increasing your heart and breathing rates to increase the oxygen supply to your brain. However, this response is meant to be temporary, what happens when you don’t have a release for the stress? The previous listed symptoms are just the beginning, stress can causes diabetes, heart attacks, infertility and even death.
Now, let’s take a break from these depressing but true facts, your deadlines, bills, what sport or activity your kids need to sign up for next, even from who is getting the last rose on the bachelor or where the White Walkers will attack next.
Close your eyes and think, if you could take a mental and physical health break and could do anything and go anywhere, where would you go and what would you do? What and who would you surround yourself with?
A common answer is a warm sunny beach, surrounded by endless blue skies.
How about away from every other soul (with maybe a few exceptions), where solitude surrounds you and the only sounds you hear are the crashing of waves, the sway of the trees, and the calls of the wildlife that encompasses you?
Or did you picture being surrounded by your family and friends, where stories and laughter never end and where the sweet and smoky taste of food awakens your taste buds?
Although these scenes are vastly different, they have something very much in common! You are surrounded by nature. Studies have shown significant health gains for individuals that are in contact with nature including:
- Reduced anxiety and depression
- Increased energy levels
- Lower risk of diabetes
- Increased weight loss and fitness
- 50% lower risk of heart attack
- Improved sleep quality and help mitigating sleep problems
As society furthers itself from the great outdoors, why not fight back. Bring back the need to build your first sandcastle, catch your first frog or even get your first taste of rain or snow on your tongue because it is these behaviours that help promote a healthy society.
Healthy Parks, Healthy People
This is the reason why Ontario Parks has joined the international movement, Healthy Parks, Healthy People that promotes the link between a healthy environment and a healthy society.
On select dates every summer, we celebrate this link and opening our “gates” to everyone in Ontario with FREE day-use. Parks across the province will offer events and activities that encourage people to visit parks and be active. Explore a new park, sample our facilities and services or enjoy a fun event in a great natural setting!
To get a full list of dates and activities please visit our Healthy Parks, Healthy People webpage.
No matter what you envisioned, sand between your toes at a breathtaking beach, surrounding yourself with the quiet solitude of wilderness or having endless laughter and memories with loved ones on a new adventure, Ontario Parks can offer you the venue!
Let nature be your cure.