Walking in nature promotes total health, both physical and mental. An example of this can be seen by looking at the body’s relationship with stress after walking through an urban and a green environment. In one study, groups of university students were taken on walks through a forest and the city. Saliva samples taken from the participants before and after each of the walks demonstrated that the experience of walking through the forest reduced the participants’ levels of cortisol, the body’s stress hormone, to a greater extent than did the city walk.(1) These results were echoed in a study where researchers looked at EEG readings of participants as they walked through a shopping district, a leafy green area, and then a busy commercial site. The brain activity recorded on this walk demonstrated a reduction in tension and stress as the participants entered into the natural area, coupled with increased levels of calm and relaxation.(2) Thus, by intentionally getting exposure to nature during their walk, the participants had lower levels of stress, both physical and mental, than they experienced by walking through more developed areas.