Last Updated: 15/09/2016
Tags: Green Prescriptions
There’s nothing like getting away from the hustle and bustle of every day life and escaping to the countryside. We are so lucky to have so many parks and large expanses of areas to walk in South West London. There’s something very healing about being in nature, and having some time out from the normal confides of our every day lives.
In the news this week we have seen that doctors are now being urged by the NHS to write so-called green prescriptions for people battling with their weight. A typical green prescription could include free visits to National Parks and gardening with the National trust. Doctors in Dorset are already prescribing outdoor activities that include walks, gardening, conservation work and sailing.
According to the NHS Choices people who participate in regular exercise have:
up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
up to a 50% lower risk of colon cancer
up to a 20% lower risk of breast cancer
a 30% lower risk of early death
up to an 83% lower risk of osteoarthritis
up to a 68% lower risk of hip fracture
a 30% lower risk of falls (among older adults)
up to a 30% lower risk of depression
up to a 30% lower risk of dementia
Getting out and spending time isn’t all about losing weight, it can also have a positive impact on people who suffer from anxiety and depression.
Recent studies by scientists have also shown that excercising regularly for 30 minutes each day can really help to maintain a healthy weight. One of the scientists behind this study Dr Astrid Jespersen told the Daily Telegraph: “The subjects in the test group that exercised the least talk about increased energy levels and a higher motivation for exercising and pursuing a healthy everyday life.
“They take the stairs, take the dog for an extra walk or cycle to work.
“In contrast, the men who exercised for one hour a day, after training, felt exhausted, demotivated and less open to making a healthy change.
“We are thus seeing that a moderate amount of exercise will significantly impact the subjects' daily practices.”
As with everything in life it seems as though the smallest of changes in life can really make the biggest differences to our health. So why not get out and enjoy some of the wonderful countryside this area has to offer and perhaps even do a spot of blackberry picking, to freeze and use during the months ahead.