Just 90 minutes. According to the Stanford University study, that’s how long it takes for a person’s brain to reduce the possibility of having depression while hiking in nature. Especially during the ongoing COVID—19 pandemic, it is crucial to take care of your physical and mental well-being.
Here are the FIVE fun facts that should leave you wanting to go on the hike even more:
1. Experience the Wildlife
Did you know that hiking out in nature increases your chances of encountering wild animals? It is super interesting to see the beauty of Canadian wildlife. Seeing big wild animals, like bears or moose, can be dangerous. Therefore, be sure to take the necessary precautions since hiking is taken at your own risk. It is also important to stay respectful to nature and the animal habitat living in the environment.
2. Increase in Vitamin D
Starting the beginning of spring until mid-October, you are exposed to the sun more than ever. By spending at least an hour hiking while being exposed to sunshine can cause the body to produce Vitamin D. This Vitamin tends to improve the immune system, which is essential for your body to fight outside microbes. Vitamin D is also necessary for your bone development by providing enough calcium for its growth.
3. Hiking Might Make You Happy!
If you have already gone for a hike in the past, you know what we are talking about! According to Harvard Health Publishing, hiking will positively impact the mental state. During your long walk in nature, the body produces endorphins, which are deemed to relieve your pain. Whether you start exploring with your family or by yourself, today or tomorrow, hiking will leave you with plenty of emotions. Plus, exploring the beautiful natural environment may also release you of any stress or ongoing depression.
4. Possible Improvements in Blood Pressure
Is your blood pressure too high? Go for a hike! During hiking, most of the time, the path is not just a straight line. By walking at inclines or declines, your body can get more physical activity that can decrease your blood pressure. Implementing regular hikes into your lifestyle may potentially reduce the risks of you having heart disease.
5. Unique Hiking Experience
Every hiking experience does not have to be the same. It is important to have a change of scenery once in a while. In doing so, a change of hiking trails may contribute to your positive mindset, happiness and overall mental well-being. Try visiting unique parks or trails in Ontario if you have the opportunity to do so. Check out Bruce Trail Conservancy, which is a 900 km marked footpath located in Ontario. This path reaches from Niagara Falls to Tobermory up north. Although the distance can go so far, you can choose any city or part of the path to start your hike experience. You can also check out Hilton Falls Conservation Area, Mono Cliffs Provincial Park, or Rattray Marsh Conservation Area for fantastic scenery and a unique hiking experience.
It’s surprising how much good a hike can do to your body. At Holistic Medical Clinic, we are more than happy to hear all about your adventurous walks and fun encounters while you were out hiking.
*Before you go out and about, check out current updates on COVID-19 restrictive public measures taken place at Ontario Parks.
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