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Nature Changes The Urban Brain

2015.07.24 17:03 PT

Gretchen Reynolds, The New York Times:

These results “strongly suggest that getting out into natural environments” could be an easy and almost immediate way to improve moods for city dwellers, Mr. Bratman said.

Gregory Bratman is a graduate student at the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources at Stanford University and studies how urban living affects our psychology. Bratman et al. published a paper titled “Nature experience reduces rumination and subgenual prefrontal cortex activation”. You can read the abstract at PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America), but here’s the really short version: Urbanization is linked to increased levels of mental illness like depression and urbanites can improve their moods by being exposed to natural environments.