Most of us have felt the inexplicable pull of the outdoors, even if it’s simply prompting us to take a neighbourhood walk or sit in the backyard watching the clouds or the squirrels. Nature holds a special kind of energy: it is pure and wild and spirit-renewing.

Simply spending time in parks, gardens and forests is linked to stronger mental and physical health. On the contrary, living in an area with little green space is tied to higher risk of disease, including depression and anxiety, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), cancer, diabetes, and so much more.

New research has found that being in nature actually boosts the immune system, which in turn, increases our mental and physical health. Being in nature is similar to taking a multivitamin that provides us with all the nutrients our bodies need to simultaneously protect us from all types of physical and mental ailments.

So how does the immune system get a boost from nature? One way is that it switches the body into “rest and digest” mode — the opposite of “fight or flight,” a well-known immune system killer. When we feel content and safe — and not fixated on a problem — the body can invest more energy and resources toward the immune system, rather than wasting all of that precious energy on a work deadline, for example.

Being outside also has inherent immune-boosting qualities such as vitamin D from sunlight, negative ions, phytoncides (healthy antimicrobial compounds derived from plants) and mycobacterium vaccae (good bacteria in the soil).

Balrath House & Courtyard will soon be running retreats – set in 1.5 acres of stunning & elegant gardens surrounded by 20.5 acres on the River Nanny, a place of privacy and tranquillity.

Read More: “How might contact with nature promote human health? Promising mechanisms and a possible central pathway” published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology.