A growing body of research shows that people who spend time outside in sunny, green and natural spaces tend to be happier and healthier than those who don’t. A study from Stanford last year, for example, found that young adults who walked for an hour through campus parkland were less anxious afterward and performed better on a test of working memory than if they had strolled along a busy street.
Precisely what is going on inside our bodies as we move through the greenery is largely unknown, however. It hasn’t even been made clear that nature itself is responsible for the greatest health benefits — they may come instead from physical activity, sunlight or, if you stroll with others, camaraderie. Now a new study published in The International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health takes a step toward sorting these interactions out by focusing on pictures of the outdoors rather than on the real thing.
[For more of this story, written by Gretchen Reynolds, go to http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/...amp;mtrref=undefined]