Don's Home Recreation Hiking and Camping Nature Deficit Disorder
In Andrew Weil's Daily Beast article about his new book, Spontaneous Happiness he says,
"The term "nature-deficit disorder" has recently entered the popular vocabulary, though it has not yet made it into the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or been accepted by the medical community. It was coined by the author Richard Louv to explain a wide range of behavior problems in children who spend less time outdoors but now is invoked as the root cause of an even wider range of both physical and emotional ailments in people of all ages who are disconnected from nature."

Weil goes on,

"Human beings evolved to thrive in natural environments and in bonded social groups."

"Behaviors strongly associated with depression--reduced physical activity and human contact, overconsumption of processed food, seeking endless distraction--are the very behaviors that more and more people now can do, are even forced to do by the nature of their sedentary, indoor jobs."

"Within the U.S., the rate of depression of members of the Old Order Amish--a religious sect that shuns modernity in favor of lifestyles roughly emulating those of rural Americans a century ago--is as low as one 10th that of other Americans."

"Our hearing has evolved to attend to and analyze changes in the complex acoustical patterns of nature, like those of forests, running water, rain, and wind. Evolution did not prepare us to endure the kinds of man-made sounds that pervade our cities and lives today. Noise strongly affects our emotions, nervous systems, and physiology."

"Lifestyle programs intended to relieve depression by correcting the mismatch between the modern world and our "ancient brains and bodies" recommend such interventions as increasing aerobic exercise, improving sleep, spending more time in the sun, eating more fish to boost intake of omega-3 fatty acids, socializing more, and not dwelling on negative thoughts. "

Emotional Health Center - Everyday Health
Emotional Health

last updated 2 Nov 2011