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Coastal Visits Mend Your Head

Isn't science wonderful? UK readers will be delighted to know that their education system is responsible for such groundbreaking research as this one. It seems that  visiting the coast is quite good for your mental health. Also, being outside is good for your mental health. But not as good as being outside, by the sea. In fact, the worst of the lot (apart from not being outside at all), is being outside in urban parks. Yuck. Dog poo, hoodies, pointy umbrellas. Double yuck.

Nice to have it confirmed though. The research came from The Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry, partly based in Plymouth. On the coast. Wonder if someone's got a house on the market.


Being beside the seaside is good for you

Exercise in the open air is good for you, but if you want to reap the full benefits you should head for the coast or the countryside rather than an urban park.

That is the conclusion of research by Katherine Ashbullby and Dr Mathew White from the European Centre for Environment and Human Health (ECEHH), Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry, and the School of Psychology, University of Plymouth.

Ashbully and White studied data from 2750 English respondents drawn from Natural England's two-year study of people's engagement with the natural environment. They looked at people who had visited urban parks, the countryside and the coast.

They found that all outdoor locations were associated with positive feelings (enjoyment, calmness, refreshment), but that visits to the coast were most beneficial and visits to urban parks least beneficial. This finding remained when the researchers took account of factors like people's age, how far they had travelled, the presence of others and the activity they undertook.

Source: Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry

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