Can you feel it? Autumn is here! After the summer heat we can breathe more easily now. Going outside can feel more rejuvenating than ever. We have talked about the benefits of fresh air before but autumn is really a wonderful time to enjoy them. Read on to learn some reasons why!
Worried about catching a cold?
Certain illnesses, like the flu and the common cold, become more prevalent once the weather turns colder. For some people this has led to the misconception that it’s the cold air itself that causes the illness. This isn’t true. Despite its name, the common cold is not brought on by feeling cold. It’s a virus, just like the flu, and the only way to catch it is to come into close contact with it. But guess what? It’s a lot easier to catch a virus indoors, especially in poorly ventilated spaces! As far as the flu is concerned, there is evidence that it does indeed like cold dry weather but you are still less likely to contract it out in the open where there is lots of space between people and the air circulation is good.
When the negative is positive
What really is “fresh air”? What kind of air is beneficial to us and why? Well, it’s actually negative ions (molecules which carry a negative electric charge) that help purify the air and have a positive effect on our bodies. Negative ions effectively remove particulate matter – one of the major air pollutants that affect human health. They help us maintain a healthy immune system and promote better cell metabolism, digestion and sleep. They protect us against asthma and allergies. Where can we look for them? Out in nature, of course, and the beauty of autumn can be a great motivator to go out and explore! They are especially abundant near waterfalls and at beaches but also in places where there are plants and a lot of sunlight. The air is also full of negative ions after a storm.
The most refreshing walks
It’s great to be outside in summer but the heat can sometimes be irritating and there’s only so many clothes you can take off. The cooler air temperatures of autumn allow you to much better control your own body temperature so that you feel comfortable. It’s unlikely that you will be too hot and if you are feeling a bit cold it’s easy enough to put on an extra layer. This means you can avoid getting unpleasantly sweaty even if you are doing exercise. You can enjoy that lovely feeling when your body is nice and warm but the cool air on your cheeks is keeping you awake, alert and focused. The beautiful sights and smells of autumn will also help you feel calmer and improve your mental health. While a walk outside in hot weather can sometimes be tiring, an autumn walk is more likely to leave you feeling invigorated.
There’s no doubt about it – the fresh, crisp, fragrant air of autumn is one of nature’s best free healing tools so go out and enjoy it!