Nature is a holistic healer.
As city dwellers, that’s what we subliminally crave when we plan a vacation in a remote, green location, usually a wildlife resort or wellness retreat with biophilic surroundings and architecture.
And what we inherently know has been proven by science – spending time in natural environments reduces stress, anxiety, and depression, while also improving immune function and overall wellbeing.
Compared to urban environments, spending time in peaceful, green and oxygen rich spaces reduces cortisol levels and improves mood, and lowers rates of depression and anxiety. Scientists have shown that natural compounds emitted by plants and trees help improve overall immune function and reduce inflammations. All of these help in an improved sense of wellbeing and vitality, better sleep and positive feelings of good health.
Try a simple experiment – spend 20 minutes in your nearest park and see how energy levels go up – an elevation of your mental as well as physical health.
As the importance of nature in health and wellbeing gains traction, so do practices that involve spending quality time in nature. The Japanese practice of shirin-yoku or forest-bathing is about slow, mindful walks in natural environments, allowing participants to connect with the natural world and benefit from its healing power.
Other similar practices are Ecotherapy or Green Therapy and include gardening, hiking and nature trails to find healing through nature. Gardening especially is considered a very relaxing activity, using plants and gardening activities to promote healing and wellbeing. Gardening therapy is a slow form of wellbeing involving everything from planting and caring for plants to designing and maintaining a garden.
Woods At Sasan, a luxury retreat in Sasan Gir, Gujarat, is a place to experience the holistic healing prowess of nature. Located in a mango orchard, and built sustainably using locally sourced, non-toxic, reclaimed, and reusable materials, the retreat is a haven of peace and quiet welcome. It is a biodiverse oasis of lush greenery that merges into the forest and is alive with many species of birds, butterflies and small animals. With over 400 trees in the 16-acre space, it is also India’s first retreat based on biophilic design guidelines. This connection to nature is furthered in the nature-inspired treatments at SOM, the holistic wellbeing centre of the retreat. Time-honoured therapies such as ayurveda, yoga and meditation and tai-chi, along with nature immersions such as bird-watching expeditions, escorted Gir forest wildlife safaris and nature walks provide an immersive, calming and rejuvenating experience.
“Spending time in nature can have a profound impact on physical and mental health, supporting holistic healing and wellbeing. By incorporating nature into holistic healing practices, we can tap into the healing power of the natural world and promote health and happiness,” say the team at Woods At Sasan.
So when you next think of spending, spend time in nature instead and gather its rewards.