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Go green for happiness?

Does being closer to nature mean you are happier?

green happines


Its no stretch of the imagination to conclude that if you live in a nice green area you are likely to be happier than if you live in a concrete jungle, but now we have a scientific study to actually back this up. Professor Matthew White from the university of Exeter has been looking at this relationship for some years now and concludes, not unsurprisingly, that people who live closer to parks, or have access to a garden are, by in large , less likely to suffer depression and stress related illnesses. This has got to be one of the broadest studies carried out in recent years as his study encompassed over 40 000 individuals across the UK and Europe. This study showed that those in the green areas (as he came to dub it) used far less prescription drugs and became ill far less frequently. You may think "ah-yes but that's because the green area residents must surly have been richer and so naturally better health" not so as he looked at richer and poorer from both areas.

One slight anomaly though was the over 50s in this sample. This showed that while the green area factor was still strongly pronounced in happiness levels the real indicator of better health were the level of activity that this sample engaged in, particularly the retired people. It would seem from this study that interaction with people, keeping busy with personal goals and to a large extent the quality of their diet became stronger factors in welfare than the green issue. 

So in-short if you want to feel better no matter what your age, buy a few more plants for your house, go for a walk in the park everyday, and make sure you have or are looking to take up a hobby that puts you in contact with others.


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