It feels wonderful to get back outside and re-connect with nature after winter's chill. Taking in the fragrance of earth and dirt and decay satisfies a deep craving, like the mineral-rich bone broth I crave from my local noodle shop or the tart vitamin-C packed sea buckthorn supplement a friend recently introduced me to. My body needs these nutrients.
Forest bathing, the Japanese practice of immersing oneself in nature, has profound health benefits. Literally translated as "taking in the forest atmosphere", forest bathing can help lower blood pressure, heart rate, the stress hormone cortisol and anxiety. Connecting to nature is one of the simplest ways to nourish and re-balance yourself. A new book, The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative, explores some of the fascinating research behind this. But who needs research? Follow your instincts, and the advice of Henry David Thoreau, and drink in the "tonic of the wilderness" on your next walk outside.