Simply looking at the natural world in urban areas can reap benefits | News World

New eye-tracking research has shown that simply looking at natural elements during urban walks can offer significant mental health benefits.

The study, by Bangor University and Technion- Israel Institute of Technology, published in the scientific journal People and Nature, involved city-dwellers, and showed how paying visual attention to greenery, rather than human-made structures, can alleviate anxiety and enhance restorative feelings.

The 117 urban residents who took part in the study, were guided on a 45-minute urban walk, while wearing eye-tracking glasses. They were instructed to focus their gaze on trees, plants, lawns and flowers, man-made structures or a mix of both. This unique methodology revealed that a participants’ focus on nature was associated with improvements in various mental health metrics, including anxiety levels and feelings of restorativeness.

Dr Whitney Fleming, a lecturer in Human Geography at Bangor University explained the findings, saying,

“We found that…


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