Why We Need to Be in or Near Water
Point to Ponder:
How much time each week do you spend in or near water ?
San Diego liv'in is good! Perfect weather (for the majority of the time at least) with access to the absolute most amazing body of water--the Pacific Ocean! However, If you're like me, you don't get to the ocean near as much as you should, but with summer around the corner that's going to change! My plan is to get to the big blue as often as possible, and if that doesn't work, we'll be at the pool. Here's why:
Getting in water is a great way to beat the heat, but with bodies of water being part of nature and outdoor swimming pools being in nature, being in and near water has similar life-giving, detoxifying, stress eliminating and holistic benefits as time in nature. To focus on the benefits of water specifically, author J. Nichols wrote a fasnciating book titled Blue Mind. In the book, J. writes about the scientific connection between water, health and happiness and the cognitive and emotional benefits we receive every time we spend time in and around water. He first sites the body/water connection by stating our body consists of 60% water, and our brain--75% of water! J. says, "When you see water, when you hear water, it triggers a response in your brain that you're in the right place."
As for the physiological affect, according to J.'s findings, proximity to water floods the brain with feel-good hormones such as dopamine and oxytocin. Levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, actually drop. As a reminder, too much stress causes higher levels of cortisol, and higher cortisol levels result in:
a decrease in our immune system
increase of abdominal fat deposition
the breakdown of muscle, bone, and connective tissue
inhibits thyroid hormone activation.
Jay concludes our response to water is deep, human, life and survival. Scientists have also discovered that the brain prefers the color blue above all others and water increases our ability to focus. He says, "water helps us relax and sucks the stress out of our body and mind, and because stress affects our physical, mental and emotional health, spending time in, around and near water really is necessary for optimal health".
As for water opportunities within your iGnite San Diego class schedule, we're working on them now. We'll roll out our summer plans soon, so definitely be on the look out!
Make it a priority to spend time in and around water each week and don't forget to drink at least 1/2 your body weight in oz of water each day.
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