Whether you live in a bustling metropolis or a quaint country town, your environment affects your health. The amount of light and the range of temperatures we’re exposed to on a daily basis influence many of our physiological and hormonal processes.
And, like so many other factors that go into your health, the climate in which you’ll thrive is a personal matter. Not everyone does well in the tropical temperatures of Florida or the crisp Colorado winters. In order to feel your best, it’s critical to understand what climate serves you. The study of how environment affects health is called geomedicine.
But you don’t need to be an expert in geomedicine to put its wisdom into action. One fast way to change your relationship to your environment for the better is to explore new places around you that may be well-suited to your unique geomedical needs.
For example, if you know that you need a cool, shady environment to feel calm and centered, do some research on your surrounding area and see if there are any safe trails to explore in parks or nearby woods. Alternatively, if you need a bit more sunshine in your life, look for nearby areas that may be sunshine magnets, exposed to the elements.
Of course, these factors will vary by season and location, but taking the time to discover the natural resources in your local area can make a big difference. Almost every city has pockets of nature smattered throughout, and almost every small town is adjacent to some form of natural beauty. Be willing to take the drive (or bike, bus, or train ride) to get to the kind of environment that will help your body function at its best.
As you explore new areas, take note of how your body feels in each. How do you react in a jostling city street versus a wide-open field? What do you feel in the shade of the forest versus at the beach? All of this is information that can help you modify your daily life (and your vacation plans) to suit your distinct body profile.
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