SHINRIN-YOKU (Forest Bathing) began in Japan in the 1980s and has spread all over the world in the 40 years since then. Nowadays it is revered in many countries as an easily accessible, healthy way to spend time in nature. Although this is not widely known by Japanese themselves, the word SHINRIN-YOKU is used in other languages as-is, in a similar fashion to MATCHA and WAGYU, and enjoyed on weekends, days off and vacations.
As some of you may know, SHINRIN-YOKU has wonderful health-promoting effects. This is effective in reducing stress hormones and can improve depression, therefore it may be effective in reducing mental stress and preventing mental disorders during the Coronavirus calamity. Furthermore, forest bathing can prevent hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, and respiratory diseases by strengthening immunity and reducing stress. From these perspectives, forest bathing can contribute to both the prevention of infection with the coronavirus itself as well as the worsening effects of its effects.
Through many research projects around the world, looking at its health-promoting effects, SHINRIN-YOKU has received a lot of scientific evidence to back up its claims.
From these results it has become clear that:
① One 20-minute to 2-hour SHINRIN-YOKU session promotes parasympathetic nerve activity, reduces mental stress and stress hormones, and is effective in improving depression.
② SHINRIN-YOKU provides stress relief which exerts a preventive effect on lifestyle-related diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, and respiratory diseases.
③ A SHINRIN-YOKU session of 2 nights and 3 days enhances immune function, and the effect lasts for about 1 month.
It seems that many modern physical and mental health problems indeed can be remedied by SHINRIN-YOKU.
Fortunately, there are many forests around the world that are suitable for SHINRIN-YOKU. And it can also be practised in large parks and green spaces near your home or office.
If you usually visit the park for a walk, to play with your children, or to walk your pets, try taking in some SHINRIN-YOKU to improve your health as well. If you have never experienced SHINRIN-YOKU before, take this opportunity to try the pleasant sensation.
Then, incorporate SHINRIN-YOKU into a daily practice to boost your immune system and ensure your mind and body are less susceptible to illnesses!