How Trees Affect Our Longevity
Posted by : Mary Wutz /
New research by psychologist Omid Kardan of the University of Chicago is showing that the presence of trees - especially in urban settings - could be linked to longevity and increased life span for city dwellers. In his studies, he found that a certain "happy-hormone" is released when humans see trees within the city, which helps to calm people internally as well as reduce our risk of heart disease, stroke, and even obesity.
As you might have already guessed, certain ancient cultures have long been aware of this effect that trees can have. The power of trees is so prevalent in Chinese culture that their alphabet is modeled after them. For ages, Japanese doctors have recommended "Forest Bathing" as a means to reduce stress, and the teachings of Buddha are also steeped in a tradition that pays reverence to trees. So the next time you find yourself seeking the shade of a city tree, perhaps dwell on the fact that it might be doing more than just cooling you off.
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