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The Place You Should Go When You Have 30 Minutes to Spare At Work (No, It’s Not the Bar)


The mental benefit of being outdoors probably explains the reduced risk of both physical conditions, says lead study author Danielle Shanahan, Ph.D., of the University of Brisbane.

Related: The Men’s Health Big Book Of Uncommon Knowledge-thousands of DIY tips, how-to articles, and awesome skills every modern man must master

Separate research backs this up: A study published last year in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that walking in nature reduces activity in your subgenual prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain linked to risk of mental illness and depression.

Plus, spending time outside also gives you a break from daily stressors like work and other responsibilities, Shanahan says.

This can lower the stress hormones in your body, helping to reduce anxiety and keep your BP in check.

Related: Why Doctors Miss Depression In Men

It’s best to spend your park time in one big chunk-the study shows that bundling the 30 minutes into a single visit is more beneficial than taking several shorter visits.

But if you can’t swing 30 minutes all at once, you can still get some benefits from shorter bursts throughout your week.

Related: The Best Time to Take Your Work Break

Fit in a few minutes per day by walking through a park on your way to the train station, or eating your lunch at an outdoor picnic table instead of at your desk, Shanahan says.

And if you really can’t leave your desk, bring the park to you: Adding green plants to your office can bring the relaxing feel of nature to your office, too.

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