August 30, 2023
Author – Srinivas Abhilash
predicts that by 2050, around 2.5 billion more people will live in cities. This surge in urban population, however, brings up a concerning issue – the availability of green spaces. These green areas, which are crucial for our well-being, are at risk of being sacrificed as cities expand to make room for the growing population.
With cities getting busier, the significance of green spaces becomes even more apparent. These spots provide a necessary escape from the hustle and bustle, a place where both the mind and body can recharge. But as these areas dwindle, handling the stress and health issues that come with urban living becomes a challenge.
Modern medicine, often relied upon, can have its own drawbacks. The side effects and complexities it brings are becoming clearer, prompting us to search for alternatives. For many people, a visit to the doctor often ends with a medication prescription. But what if your doctor prescribed a walk in the park, a cycle ride in the woods, or a trek, instead of conventional medicine?
Natural remedies are gaining attention as a way to address the lifestyle diseases and stress exacerbated by urban living. This quest for natural solutions has gained momentum, especially after the events of the 2020 pandemic.
In a world where concrete jungles are expanding, and the need for well-being is becoming more crucial, the concept of “Green Prescriptions” is on the rise. These prescriptions prescribe a different kind of medicine – Nature itself. As we face the challenges of our modern urban lifestyle, the call to integrate nature into our lives is becoming more urgent than ever.
Nature’s Patterns: Your Urban Escape and Inner Peace
Every weekend, a familiar scene unfolds as urban dwellers flock to the outskirts of the city. They seek the woods, trekking trails, nature walks, and resorts nestled amidst the tranquility of nature. This weekend ritual is a common thread among busy corporates and urbanites who often spend their days confined within cubicles and enclosed spaces. Why does this phenomenon persist, almost like an inner pull?
It’s no mere coincidence that we’re drawn to nature repeatedly. This deep-seated yearning is rooted in something fundamental to our well-being. Nature holds an innate power to rejuvenate and soothe our stressed minds. The answer lies in a concept known as fractals – patterns that repeat themselves at different scales. Nature is abundant with fractals, from the spirals of leaves to the shapes of flower petals.
When we escape to nature, we unknowingly immerse ourselves in these fractals. The repetition of patterns resonates with our brains, inducing a state of relaxation and calm. It’s as if nature is a balm for our overworked minds. This connection is so profound that just a simple glimpse of nature’s fractals can reduce stress and mental fatigue by a remarkable 60%, as shown in studies led by Taylor and his team.
These intricate fractal patterns in nature sync with our brainwaves, leading to a sense of ease. It’s why gazing at a scenic landscape, taking a leisurely walk in the woods, or simply enjoying the sight of leaves rustling in the breeze makes us feel rejuvenated. This natural harmony between fractals in nature and our brain’s response is the reason our inner consciousness urges us to seek solace in nature, especially when urban life’s hustle becomes overwhelming.
So, the next time you find yourself yearning for a weekend escape to the countryside, remember that it’s not just a whim. Your inner self recognizes the soothing magic of nature’s fractals, designed to restore the balance that our modern urban lives often disrupt.
The Rising Trend of Green Prescriptions
The emerging trend of Green Prescriptions has gained prominence across various countries, showcasing its potential to enhance public health and well-being. Originating in New Zealand during the late nineties, doctors were among the pioneers in issuing green prescriptions, which have now become an integral part of the government’s health initiatives. Interestingly, residents in New Zealand have the option to self-refer and avail an array of complimentary health benefits through this program.
Taking a cue from this success, the UK government allocated £4 million ($5.2 million) in 2020 for a two-year green-prescription pilot as a strategic component of its post-COVID-19 recovery strategy.
Meanwhile, in Japan, clinicians have been advocating the practice of ‘shinrin yoku’, commonly known as ‘forest bathing’, since 1982. This innovative approach involves encouraging patients to immerse themselves in the country’s extensive 3,000 miles of woodland walks. Notably, an impressive investment of $4 million has been dedicated to promoting ‘shinrin yoku’ as a prominent national health program in Japan. This collective global shift toward utilizing nature as a prescription for improved health reflects the rising prominence of Green Prescriptions.
A Journey of Connection and Discovery Beyond Prescriptions
It’s more than just taking a walk in a park; it’s about fully immersing yourself in the beauty of nature. Being surrounded by wide open spaces creates a deep bond with the environment, making us feel refreshed and a part of something bigger than the city.
Nature prescriptions don’t just help with lowering blood pressure, reducing depression and anxiety, and easing loneliness. There’s more to it. Being close to big green areas also makes us feel less alone, and simply being around the tiny living things in nature might even make our immune systems stronger.
As we think about our well-being, we should listen to what nature is telling us. It’s asking us to enjoy peaceful places, consider new opportunities, and find calmness. The idea of Green Prescriptions is like a guide to a future where nature itself takes care of us. It’s not just a medical suggestion; it’s an invitation to discover ourselves, heal, and feel deeply connected. It’s like a journey into the heart of life—a journey that’s truly making our lives greener and better.
“Green Prescriptions: Nurturing Well-Being, Enriching Environments, and Boosting Societies”
Green Prescriptions extend their benefits in multifaceted ways, encompassing environmental, economic, and societal realms.
Environmental Advantages: By encouraging individuals to immerse themselves in nature, Green Prescriptions promote a greater appreciation for the environment. This heightened connection often leads to increased awareness of conservation efforts and sustainable practices.
Moreover, the act of spending time outdoors can contribute to the preservation of green spaces and the ecosystems they support. This virtuous cycle enhances biodiversity, improves air quality, and fosters a healthier planet for future generations.
Economic Benefits: The impact of Green Prescriptions ripples through economies. As people engage in outdoor activities and experience better well-being, the demand for related services such as ecotourism, outdoor gear, and guided nature experiences increases. This surge in demand creates job opportunities and stimulates local economies.
Additionally, the potential reduction in healthcare costs due to improved public health and fewer chronic diseases can alleviate the strain on healthcare systems, resulting in cost savings for governments and individuals alike.
Societal Gains: Green Prescriptions have the power to foster stronger communities. When individuals participate in nature-based activities, they often do so in groups or as families. These shared experiences strengthen social bonds and facilitate a sense of belonging. Moreover, the positive impact on mental well-being can lead to increased productivity and engagement in various aspects of life, from work to personal relationships. This collective improvement in quality of life contributes to a happier, more cohesive society.
Farmland Ownership – Green Prescriptions for Life
Green Subscriptions offer a holistic approach to well-being that extends beyond individual health. By promoting a symbiotic relationship between humans and the natural world, they nurture a healthier environment, invigorate economies, and enrich the fabric of society.
However, there’s a challenge for city dwellers: How can we stay connected to green spaces all year round? The answer is to own a piece of agricultural land where plants and forests can thrive. But taking care of this land can be tough – it takes time, money, and skills.
That’s where managed farmlands come in. They make it easy to enjoy the benefits of nature without the complications. With experts and the advantage of working on a larger scale, these pieces of land become places where things can grow in a sustainable way. And the best part? You’ll be part of a community of people who share your love for nature and take care of it.
By bringing together nature and community, we can reconnect. Managed farmlands let us dive into the very elements that make us up, giving us happiness, a sense of belonging, and a purpose. When we combine the embrace of nature with support from a community, we remember that we’re a vital part of the beautiful web of life. So, as city folks, We should strongly think about getting agricultural land or managed farmland. This can be our door to nature whenever we want it.