Forest bathing.

Never heard of it? It’s a term coined by Japanese researchers who study the positive effect of living in nature. They contend that aerosols from the forests inhaled during a walk create higher levels of specific cells that fight tumors and infections.

Antidote to Stress

With growing evidence suggesting that living in nature environments is associated with better health and well-being, city-dwellers are flocking to nature-rich adult lifestyle communities. For them, nature is not just “nice to have”. It’s viewed as an antidote for stress. Living in nature lowers blood pressure and anxiety while boosting their immune system and self-esteem.  

As Japanese researchers suggest walking in nature, specifically, has a very positive effects. In a controlled experiment, participants who took a 90-minute walk through a natural environment reported lower levels of negative thoughts, long linked to risk for mental illness. The same walk an urban setting? No such effects.

The move to communities that offer direct exposure and contact with nature is blossoming for a reason. They offer pleasing aesthetic qualities like open views, proximity to fresh water and lack of loud noise and pollution.

Deeper Contact with Nature

Peter H. Kahn, professor of psychology who has focused on issues like these for decades, is concerned that the more contact with nature movement relies too much on the visual experience. “We need to deepen the forms of interaction with nature and make it more immersive.”

Moving to a lifestyle communities like The Preserve at Bancroft Ridge, offer a location and generous outdoor amenities. This inspires a more immersive natural experience, a trend that shows no signs of slowing down.