Concrete Jungle

Ready for a breath of fresh air?

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science.

When the going gets tough… might stopping to smell the roses boost our spirits? Literally?

Colleen Reid and team at the University of Colorado, Boulder wondered.

They surveyed over nine hundred volunteers in Denver. The subjects were questioned about their state of mind and about how much greenery they thought they lived near. They also used satellite images to measure how much green space was actually near each person’s home. 

Results? People who used green space – like parks — the most, also reported feeling less anxiety and depression. This is the case even in times of crisis, like the pandemic. And it’s true even if you just THINK you live near greener pastures!

The researchers say it’s important for EVERYONE to have access to verdant areas. This is a problem in poor and urban neighborhoods where green space is limited. 

Investing in more GREEN might be the fix to those blues!

Reference: Reid, C. E., Rieves, E. S., & Carlson, K. (2022). Perceptions of green space usage, abundance, and quality of green space were associated with better mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic among residents of Denver. PloS one, 17(3), e0263779.