Exposure to Blue Space is Associated with Health and Wellbeing
Stress and its effects on health has become an epidemic in America today. Stress affects every aspect of a person’s health including, but not limited to: sleep, immunity, happiness, obesity, cardiovascular health as well as one’s general health and wellbeing. As society searches for ways to reduce stress, it seems that looking to nature might provide answers. Recent studies have shown that there is a benefit to exposure to outdoor blue spaces. (1) ‘Blue Space’ as it is called is defined as “health-enabling places and spaces, where water is at the center of a range of environments with identifiable potential for the promotion of human wellbeing’. (2) One need only look towards America’s shores and waterways to see that blue spaces are a popular summer destination for untold numbers of families. Why? It seems that leaving the city, and heading to lakes, rivers and the ocean positively impacts a persons mental health AND promotes physical activity. (3)
In fact, the European Union has created a program called ‘Blue Health’ to study the relationship between blue space and human health.(4) So next time you are feeling stressed, pop outside and take in an outdoor blue space. Visiting the water has the potential to benefit mental health, general wellbeing and physical activity.