Study: Go Outside to Improve Your Health

Two hours outside a day may keep the doctor away, says a new study.

Researchers at the University of Exeter collected data from nearly 20,000 people in England. They found that individuals who spend 120 minutes outdoors in nature every week are more likely to report good health and higher psychological wellbeing compared to those who don’t visit the outdoors.

Researchers say it doesn’t matter how those 120 minutes are broken up, or whether this time was achieved in a single visit or over several shorter visits.

They also found that time outdoors is beneficial to everyone regardless of gender, age, sex, income level, etc.

“It’s well known that getting outdoors in nature can be good for people’s health and wellbeing but until now we’ve not been able to say how much is enough", said Dr. Mat White, of the University of Exeter Medical School, who led the study. "The majority of nature visits in this research took place within just two miles of home so even visiting local urban greenspaces seems to be a good thing. Two hours a week is hopefully a realistic target for many people, especially given that it can be spread over an entire week to get the benefit.”

The full paper is entitled, "Spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing", published in Scientific Reports.