Healthy Living by Bodies of Water
A blue state of mind near water.
Living near water has many proven health benefits. But what sort of benefits? What are the effects of living near water? Could living near water do more than just make you feel more relaxed and in-tune with nature?
Frankly, yes! Many studies show that people living near water benefit from better sleep, stress relief, and a boosted immune system.
Let’s dive into how living near water is good for you.
The ‘Blue Mind’ Effect Near Water
Spending time near bodies of water, or blue spaces, create a so-called ‘blue mind’ effect on our brains. The term, defined by Wallace J. Nichols, states the effect acts as a switch for our brains to become calm, relax, and is proven to increase creativity. Blue mind can be achieved in any facet of water. Whether it’s sound, sight, or touch; interacting with water is great for our mental health, creating the feeling of peace and relaxation through the still, tranquil landscape.
Improved Sleep Quality
It’s no wonder why many sound machines produce the sound of water. The very sound of water can have a profound effect on reducing stress and easing agitation. Along with sound, the sight of water can also de-clutter and cleanse your mind of stress through a meditative-like state. Having your body and mind at ease, your sleep quality will improve, you’ll fall asleep faster and feel more revitalized, refreshed, alert, and happier overall.
Boosted Immune System
Increased White Blood Cells
Plants and trees near bodies of water release phytoncides into the fresh air. When breathing phytoncides in, it’s known to help our immune systems by elevating our white blood cell counts! This means boosted immune function that increases your ability to fight off infection and illness.
Reducing Chronic Stress
Aside from the phytoncides, being around water helps reduce stress which also boosts your immune system. Chronic stress is known to dampen your immune system by decreasing your white blood cell count and increasing cortisol levels which can be harmful to bodily functions. Hearing, seeing, or interacting with water provides that needed balance of relief to help control and reduce stress.
More Vitamin D for Your Blood Stream
Let’s not forget being by water also gives us time in green spaces! Getting out in mother nature only adds to the reduction of stress and provides a valuable source of vitamin D. A Boston University study showed that in just three months of increasing their sun exposure, people with high blood pressure saw an increase in their Vitamin D levels by over 100%. Once their blood pressure went back to normal it stayed normal in the months that followed!
So, the benefits of living near water are pretty evident, and not just for making you feel more at ease, but also improving your overall quality of life.