This is how long you need to spend in nature each week for a health boost

Natalie Cornish
Photo credit: Biletskiy_Evgeniy - Getty Images

From Country Living

Simply sitting still in nature and enjoying the view for two hours a week can have major health benefits, a new study has found.

The physical and mental rewards of incorporating the outdoors into your routine have long been known (doctors have been prescribing fresh air for a while), but this research is the first to put a number on how long you need to spend in nature to feel more positive – according to The Guardian.

Photo credit: AVTG - Getty Images

Researchers at the University of Exeter Medical School spoke to 20,000 people in England about their activity and happiness levels over the period of a week. Those who spent time outdoors were more likely to report good health and quality of life, a key indicator of wellbeing. And they didn't need to be active when doing so, simply enjoying the peace and quiet was enough.

There's no need to set aside two hours in one go either. The study found 120 minutes could be taken throughout the week, with seaside trips, woodland walks and urban park outings with the dog all counting towards the total.

Further studies are now needed to quantify the findings, but a two-hour nature fix could become the official recommended weekly allowance in the UK.

Want to embrace the great outdoors this weekend? Lace up your boots and enjoy one of Britain's favourite walks.

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