Beach-lovers do know to appreciate the simple joys in life: a refreshing swim, a great afternoon with friends, the feel of hot sun on their skin, beautiful views… So, it is no wonder that these people are happiest to be around!
If you still need reasons to visit beach on regular basis, read on to learn how sun, sand and surf can improve your physical and mental health.
Health Benefits of the Beach
In a study in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, an environmental health expert and assistant professor at the Brown School named J. Aaron Hipp indicated the restorative environment of the beach.
Look no further than the experts. In a study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, author J. Aaron Hipp, Ph.D., environmental health expert and assistant professor at the Brown School, pointed to the restorative environment of the beach.
“Studies have shown that natural environments like beaches and waterfront parks offer more restorative benefits to people than gyms, entertainment venues and the built urban environment,” he said.
This study also suggests that people need specific conditions on the beach in order to get the most of these restorative properties.
“Mild temperature days and low tides offer the most restorative environments when visiting the beach,” he explained.
“Beachgoers visiting on a day nearly 3 degrees (F) warmer than average were 30 percent less likely to perceive the beach or coastal park as restorative, compared with those visiting on average or cooler than average days.”
When the skin is exposed to sun, the body makes vitamin D, which helps with building strong bones and calcium absorption. According to Mayo Clinic, even 10-minute sun exposure provides us with our daily dose. And, “your body can produce 10,000 to 25,000 IU of vitamin D in just a little under the time it takes for your skin to turn pink,” according to the vitamin D council.
In addition, sun exposure has been also associated with prevention of autoimmune diseases and an increase in endorphins.
The soles of the feet have more nerve-endings per square centimeter than any other body part. And, walking barefoot stimulates then even more than walking in shoes.
In addition to stimulating nerve endings, walking barefoot also strengthens the muscles in the feet. According to Martin Zucker, author of Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever?, you might be far better connected to the earth when you walk barefoot, reaping mood-boosting benefits.
“Our muscles perform more mechanical work when running or walking on sand than on a hard surface,” said study co-author Dr. Thierry M. Lejeune, M.D.
Sea water contains various minerals, such as iodine, potassium and magnesium, all of which provide therapeutic, healing, and detoxifying properties.
Swimming is associated with reduced stressed and increased sense of well-being; it has been scientifically shown that water-based exercise help reduce depression and anxiety.
In addition to offering therapeutic effects, swimming also engages most of the major muscle groups. As an added bonus, being a non-impact sport, swimming is a great option for people with injuries, but willing to exercise.