Recent studies show that the beach is one of the best places to alleviate stress and heal your brain.
Here at Beachboppin we knew this already and have said it for years, and not only your brain though your health.
Now there is scientific proof (as if we needed any on this one) ?
Lora Fleming of the University of Exeter in England says the idea that the beach helps our health is well established.
As early as the 18th century doctors use to prescribe trips to the ocean to visit “bathing hospitals”. Bathing hospitals were specially designed clinics that provided seawater bath treatments.
Fleming notes however, that scientist have only started looking at the ocean’s health benefits experimentally in recent times.
There is something soothing about the sound of waves coming in from the ocean, the smell of salt water, and the feeling of warm sand beneath your toes. Yet, recent studies prove that a beach-type environment can have a huge effect on our brain and well-being of good.
Although few people deny the importance of brain health, most of us don’t focus as much effort on taking care of our brains as we do our body. The misnomer that physical fitness trumps mental health is at our detriment. The reality is that we need balance, both mentally and physically.
Now numerous studies help us appreciate why the beach may be the premier destination for us to unwind and recharge our minds.
Your Brain’s Prefrontal Cortex Is Activated
The prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain associated with emotion and self-refection (as well as other functions) has been shown to be engaged when ocean sounds are played. Scans taken by scientists of participants of studies that were exposed to ocean sounds and traffic noises proved that this was the case.
OceanWaves Generate Negative Ions
The peaceful feeling, we get at the beach could be a result of molecular changes that are happening in our bodies. The ocean’s waves produce negative ions. Negative ions accelerate our bodies ability to absorb oxygen. They also balance levels of serotonin; a chemical produced by the body that is related to mood and stress. This is one reason why being at the beach have been linked, by scientists to positive mental energy and a general overall sense of health and well-being.
Your Stress Hormone Cortisol Level Would Be Lowered
The reason the beach has such a calming effect on us could be because of the sound the waves make. Shelley Batts, Ph.D., an auditory neuroscientist at Stanford University and a presenter at the first Blue Mind Summit writes “There’s a lot of research that has weeded out what types of noise humans find pleasant and relaxing, and what types are considered noxious and stress-inducing.
The Flat Ocean’s Surface Calms You
The flat plane of the ocean’s surface may also give us a sense of security and safety. Neuroscientist Michael Merzenich says that humans feel safe when they are in places that are not complex. In forest humans need to be weary of predator animals; in the cities there are crooks and villains to be wary of; however, at the beach we can see for miles and this gives us peace of mind. There are no potential threats to think about.
We know, this is probably old news to many people. You go to the beach, to relax and enjoy in the first place. After you leave the beach, many sleep wonderfully from a day at the beach.
So next time you see it is a nice sunny day outside why not take a trip to the beach? You will be doing yourself and your body a world of good.