What I'm listening to: Hidden Brain: Our Better Nature
In the Hidden Brain podcast, host Shankar Vedantam speaks to Ming Kuo, a psychologist who has studies how green spaces affect human behaviour. Just as animals thrive in their natural wild habitat and do less well in artificial habitats such as zoos, Kuo explains how evidence shows that humans have better social, behavioural and health outcomes when they are in "greener" environments with grass and trees. Thus, the oft-touted "healing power of nature" is now backed by evidence- moods and even immune systems are boosted by being in nature.
It is such a simple idea to return to nature in order to make ourselves well. In our busy lives, sometimes we forget that we are animals too and some parts of us are hard-wired to respond to nature.
A tip to boost wellness to those of us who strive to be more self-sustainable? Go out into nature. Walk the long, scenic route. Plant trees on your property. Gift your neighbors and friends plants. Enjoy that cup of coffee in your garden.