CYBERMED LIFE - ORGANIC  & NATURAL LIVING

Cybermedlife - Therapeutic Actions Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest)

Additive Benefits of Twice Forest Bathing Trips in Elderly Patients with Chronic Heart Failure. 📎

Abstract Title: Additive Benefits of Twice Forest Bathing Trips in Elderly Patients with Chronic Heart Failure. Abstract Source: Biomed Environ Sci. 2018 Feb ;31(2):159-162. PMID: 29606196 Abstract Author(s): Gen Xiang Mao, Yong Bao Cao, Yan Yang, Zhuo Mei Chen, Jian Hua Dong, Sha Sha Chen, Qing Wu, Xiao Ling Lyu, Bing Bing Jia, Jing Yan, Guo Fu Wang Article Affiliation: Gen Xiang Mao Abstract: Chronic heart failure (CHF), a clinical syndrome resulting from the consequences of various cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), is increasingly becoming a global cause of morbidity and mortality. We had earlier demonstrated that a 4-day forest bathing trip can provide an adjunctive therapeutic influence on patients with CHF. To further investigate the duration of the impact and the optimal frequency of forest bathing trips in patients with CHF, we recruited those subjects who had experienced the first forest bathing trip again after 4 weeks and randomly categorized them into two groups, namely, the urban control group (city) and the forest bathing group (forest). After a second 4-day forest bathing trip, we observed a steady decline in the brain natriuretic peptide levels, a biomarker of heart failure, and an attenuated inflammatory response as well as oxidative stress. Thus, this exploratory study demonstrated the additive benefits of twice forest bathing trips in elderly patients with CHF, which could further pave the way for analyzing the effects of such interventions in CVDs. Article Published Date : Jan 31, 2018

Effects of Walking in Bamboo Forest and City Environments on Brainwave Activity in Young Adults. 📎

Abstract Title: Effects of Walking in Bamboo Forest and City Environments on Brainwave Activity in Young Adults. Abstract Source: Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2018 ;2018:9653857. Epub 2018 Feb 11. PMID: 29785198 Abstract Author(s): Ahmad Hassan, Jiang Tao, Guo Li, Mingyan Jiang, Liu Aii, Jiang Zhihui, Liu Zongfang, Chen Qibing Article Affiliation: Ahmad Hassan Abstract: . In Japan,"Shinrin-yoku"or forest bathing (spending time in forests) is a major practice used for relaxation. However, its effects on promoting human mental health are still under consideration. The objective of this study was to investigate the physiological and psychological relaxation effects of forest walking on adults. Sixty participants (50% males; 50% females) were trained to walk 15-minute predetermined courses in a bamboo forest and a city area (control). The length of the courses was the same to allow comparison of the effects of both environments. Blood pressure and EEG results were measured to assess the physiological responses and the semantic differential method (SDM) and STAI were used to study the psychological responses. Blood pressure was significantly decreased and variation in brain activity was observed in both environments. The results of the two questionnaires indicated that walking in the bamboo forest improves mood and reduces anxiety. Moreover, the mean meditation and attention scores were significantly increased after walking in a bamboo forest. The results of the physiological and psychological measurements indicate the relaxing effects of walking in a bamboo forest on adults. Article Published Date : Dec 31, 2017

Blood pressure-lowering effect of Shinrin-yoku (Forest bathing): a systematic review and meta-analysis. 📎

Abstract Title: Blood pressure-lowering effect of Shinrin-yoku (Forest bathing): a systematic review and meta-analysis. Abstract Source: BMC Complement Altern Med. 2017 Aug 16 ;17(1):409. Epub 2017 Aug 16. PMID: 28814305 Abstract Author(s): Yuki Ideno, Kunihiko Hayashi, Yukina Abe, Kayo Ueda, Hiroyasu Iso, Mitsuhiko Noda, Jung-Su Lee, Shosuke Suzuki Article Affiliation: Yuki Ideno Abstract: BACKGROUND: Shinrin-yoku (experiencing the forest atmosphere or forest bathing) has received increasing attention from the perspective of preventive medicine in recent years. Some studies have reported that the forest environment decreases blood pressure. However, little is known about the possibility of anti-hypertensive applications of Shinrin-yoku. This study aimed to evaluate preventive or therapeutic effects of the forest environment on blood pressure. METHODS: We systematically reviewed the medical literature and performed a meta-analysis.Four electronic databases were systematically searched for the period before May 2016 with language restriction of English and Japanese. The review considered all published, randomized, controlled trials, cohort studies, and comparative studies that evaluated the effects of the forest environment on changes in systolic blood pressure. A subsequent meta-analysis was performed. RESULTS: Twenty trials involving 732 participants were reviewed. Systolic blood pressure of the forest environment was significantly lower than that of the non-forest environment. Additionally, diastolic blood pressure of the forest environment was significantly lower than that of the non-forest environment. CONCLUSIONS: This systematic review shows a significant effect of Shinrin-yoku on reduction of blood pressure. Article Published Date : Aug 15, 2017

Effects of Short Forest Bathing Program on Autonomic Nervous System Activity and Mood States in Middle-Aged and Elderly Individuals. 📎

Abstract Title: Effects of Short Forest Bathing Program on Autonomic Nervous System Activity and Mood States in Middle-Aged and Elderly Individuals. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2017 Aug 9 ;14(8). Epub 2017 Aug 9. PMID: 28792445 Abstract Author(s): Chia-Pin Yu, Chia-Min Lin, Ming-Jer Tsai, Yu-Chieh Tsai, Chun-Yu Chen Article Affiliation: Chia-Pin Yu Abstract: The present study investigated changes in autonomic nervous system activity and emotions after a short (2 h) forest bathing program in the Xitou Nature Education Area (XNEA), Taiwan. One hundred and twenty-eight (60.0± 7.44 years) middle-aged and elderly participants were recruited. Physiological responses, pulse rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, heart rate variability (HRV), and psychological indices were measured before and after the program. We observed that pulse rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure were significantly lower after the program, which indicated physiological benefits from stress recovery. The Profile of Mood States negative mood subscale scores of"tension-anxiety","anger-hostility","fatigue-inertia","depression-dejection", and"confusion-bewilderment"were significantly lower, whereas the positive mood subscale score of"vigor-activity"was higher. Furthermore, participants exhibited significantly lower anxiety levels according to the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory. However, changes in sympathetic and parasympathetic nerve activity were nonsignificant. Our study determined that the short forest bathing program is a promising therapeutic method for enhancing heart rate and blood pressure functions as well as an effective psychological relaxation strategy for middle-aged and elderly individuals. Article Published Date : Aug 08, 2017

Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing) and Nature Therapy: A State-of-the-Art Review. 📎

Abstract Title: Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing) and Nature Therapy: A State-of-the-Art Review. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2017 Jul 28 ;14(8). Epub 2017 Jul 28. PMID: 28788101 Abstract Author(s): Margaret M Hansen, Reo Jones, Kirsten Tocchini Article Affiliation: Margaret M Hansen Abstract: BACKGROUND: Current literature supports the comprehensive health benefits of exposure to nature and green environments on human systems. The aim of this state-of-the-art review is to elucidate empirical research conducted on the physiological and psychological effects of Shinrin-Yoku (or Forest Bathing) in transcontinental Japan and China. Furthermore, we aim to encourage healthcare professionals to conduct longitudinal research in Western cultures regarding the clinically therapeutic effects of Shinrin-Yoku and, for healthcare providers/students to consider practicing Shinrin-Yoku to decrease undue stress and potential burnout. METHODS: A thorough review was conducted to identify research published with an initial open date range and then narrowing the collection to include papers published from 2007 to 2017. Electronic databases (PubMed, PubMed Central, CINAHL, PsycINFO and Scopus) and snowball references were used to cull papers that evaluated the use of Shinrin-Yoku for various populations in diverse settings. RESULTS: From the 127 papers initially culled using the Boolean phrases:"Shinrin-yoku"AND/OR"forest bathing"AND/OR"nature therapy", 64 studies met the inclusion criteria and were included in this summary review and then divided into"physiological,""psychological,""sensory metrics"and"frameworks"sub-groups. CONCLUSIONS: Human health benefits associated with the immersion in nature continue to be currently researched. Longitudinal research, conducted worldwide, is needed to produce new evidence of the relationships associated with Shinrin-Yoku and clinical therapeutic effects. Nature therapy as a health-promotion method and potential universal health model is implicated for the reduction of reported modern-day"stress-state"and"technostress.". Article Published Date : Jul 27, 2017

Terpenes from Forests and Human Health. 📎

Abstract Title: Terpenes from Forests and Human Health. Abstract Source: Toxicol Res. 2017 Apr ;33(2):97-106. Epub 2017 Apr 15. PMID: 28443180 Abstract Author(s): Kyoung Sang Cho, Young-Ran Lim, Kyungho Lee, Jaeseok Lee, Jang Ho Lee, Im-Soon Lee Article Affiliation: Kyoung Sang Cho Abstract: Forest bathing has beneficial effects on human health via showering of forest aerosols as well as physical relaxation. Terpenes that consist of multiple isoprene units are the largest class of organic compounds produced by various plants, and one of the major components of forest aerosols. Traditionally, terpene-containing plant oil has been used to treat various diseases without knowing the exact functions or the mechanisms of action of the individual bioactive compounds. This review categorizes various terpenes easily obtained from forests according to their anti-inflammatory, anti-tumorigenic, or neuroprotective activities. Moreover, potential action mechanisms of the individual terpenes and their effects on such processes, which are described in various in vivo and in vitro systems, are discussed. In conclusion, the studies that show the biological effectiveness of terpenes support the benefits of forest bathing and propose a potential use of terpenes as chemotherapeutic agents for treating various human diseases. Article Published Date : Mar 31, 2017

The Salutary Influence of Forest Bathing on Elderly Patients with Chronic Heart Failure. 📎

Abstract Title: The Salutary Influence of Forest Bathing on Elderly Patients with Chronic Heart Failure. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2017 Mar 31 ;14(4). Epub 2017 Mar 31. PMID: 28362327 Abstract Author(s): Genxiang Mao, Yongbao Cao, Bozhong Wang, Sanying Wang, Zhuomei Chen, Jirong Wang, Wenmin Xing, Xiaoxu Ren, Xiaoling Lv, Jianhua Dong, Shasha Chen, Xiuyuan Chen, Guofu Wang, Jing Yan Article Affiliation: Genxiang Mao Abstract: The aim of the current study was to test the hypothesis that forest bathing would be beneficial for elderly patients with chronic heart failure (CHF) as an adjunctive therapy. Two groups of participants with CHF were simultaneously sent to the forest or an urban control area for a four-day trip, respectively. Subjects exposed to the forest site showed a significant reduction of brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) in comparison to that of the city group and their own baseline levels. The values for the cardiovascular disease related pathological factors, including endothelin-1 (ET-1), and constituents of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS), including renin, angiotensinogen (AGT), angiotensin II (ANGII), and ANGII receptor type 1 or 2 (AT1 or AT2) in subjects exposed to the forest environment were lower than those in the urban control group. Obviously, a decreased level of inflammatory cytokines and improved antioxidant function was observed in the forest group rather than in the city group. The assessment of the profile of mood states (POMS) indicated that the negative emotional mood state was alleviated after forest bathing. As anticipated, a better air quality in the forest site was observed according to the detection of PM2.5 (particulate matter<2.5μm) and negative ions. These results provided direct evidence that forest bathing has a beneficial effect on CHF patients, and thus may pave the way for potential development of forest bathing as an effective adjunctive therapy on cardiovascular disorders. Article Published Date : Mar 30, 2017

The relationship between natural outdoor environments and cognitive functioning and its mediators.

Abstract Title: The relationship between natural outdoor environments and cognitive functioning and its mediators. Abstract Source: Environ Res. 2017 Feb 27 ;155:268-275. Epub 2017 Feb 27. PMID: 28254708 Abstract Author(s): Wilma L Zijlema, Margarita Triguero-Mas, Graham Smith, Marta Cirach, David Martinez, Payam Dadvand, Mireia Gascon, Marc Jones, Christopher Gidlow, Gemma Hurst, Daniel Masterson, Naomi Ellis, Magdalena van den Berg, Jolanda Maas, Irene van Kamp, Peter van den Hazel, Hanneke Kruize, Mark J Nieuwenhuijsen, Jordi Julvez Article Affiliation: Wilma L Zijlema Abstract: BACKGROUND: Urban residents may experience cognitive fatigue and little opportunity for mental restoration due to a lack of access to nature. Natural outdoor environments (NOE) are thought to be beneficial for cognitive functioning, but underlying mechanisms are not clear. OBJECTIVES: To investigate the long-term association between NOE and cognitive function, and its potential mediators. METHODS: This cross-sectional study was based on adult participants of the Positive Health Effects of the Natural Outdoor Environment in Typical Populations in Different Regions in Europe (PHENOTYPE) project. Data were collected in Barcelona, Spain; Doetinchem, the Netherlands; and Stoke-on-Trent, United Kingdom. We assessed residential distance to NOE, residential surrounding greenness, perceived amount of neighborhood NOE, and engagement with NOE. Cognitive function was assessed with the Color Trails Test (CTT). Mediation analysis was undertaken following Baron and Kenny. RESULTS: Each 100m increase in residential distance to NOE was associated with a longer CTT completion time of 1.50% (95% CI 0.13, 2.89). No associations were found for other NOE indicators and cognitive function. Neighborhood social cohesion was (marginally) significantly associated with both residential distance to NOE and CTT completion time, but no evidence for mediation was found. Nor were there indications for mediation by physical activity, social interaction with neighbors, loneliness, mental health, air pollution worries, or noise annoyance. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings provide some indication that proximity to nature may benefit cognitive function. We could not establish which mechanisms may explain this relationship. Article Published Date : Feb 26, 2017

Physiological Effects of Nature Therapy: A Review of the Research in Japan. 📎

Abstract Title: Physiological Effects of Nature Therapy: A Review of the Research in Japan. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2016 Aug 3 ;13(8). Epub 2016 Aug 3. PMID: 27527193 Abstract Author(s): Chorong Song, Harumi Ikei, Yoshifumi Miyazaki Article Affiliation: Chorong Song Abstract: Humans have evolved into what they are today after the passage of 6-7 million years. If we define the beginning of urbanization as the rise of the industrial revolution, less than 0.01% of our species' history has been spent in modern surroundings. Humans have spent over 99.99% of their time living in the natural environment. The gap between the natural setting, for which our physiological functions are adapted, and the highly urbanized and artificial setting that we inhabit is a contributing cause of the"stress state"in modern people. In recent years, scientific evidence supporting the physiological effects of relaxation caused by natural stimuli has accumulated. This review aimed to objectively demonstrate the physiological effects of nature therapy. We have reviewed research in Japan related to the following: (1) the physiological effects of nature therapy, including those of forests, urban green space, plants, and wooden material and (2) the analyses of individual differences that arise therein. The search was conducted in the PubMed database using various keywords. We applied our inclusion/exclusion criteria and reviewed 52 articles. Scientific data assessing physiological indicators, such as brain activity, autonomic nervous activity, endocrine activity, and immune activity, are accumulating from field and laboratory experiments. We believe that nature therapy will play an increasingly important role in preventive medicine in the future. Article Published Date : Aug 02, 2016

Health Effect of Forest Bathing Trip on Elderly Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. 📎

Abstract Title: Health Effect of Forest Bathing Trip on Elderly Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Abstract Source: Biomed Environ Sci. 2016 Mar ;29(3):212-8. PMID: 27109132 Abstract Author(s): Bing Bing Jia, Zhou Xin Yang, Gen Xiang Mao, Yuan Dong Lyu, Xiao Lin Wen, Wei Hong Xu, Xiao Ling Lyu, Yong Bao Cao, Guo Fu Wang Article Affiliation: Bing Bing Jia Abstract: Forest bathing trip is a short, leisurely visit to forest. In this study we determined the health effects of forest bathing trip on elderly patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The patients were randomly divided into two groups. One group was sent to forest, and the other was sent to an urban area as control. Flow cytometry, ELISA, and profile of mood states (POMS) evaluation were performed. In the forest group, we found a significant decrease of perforin and granzyme B expressions, accompanied by decreased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and stress hormones. Meanwhile, the scores in the negative subscales of POMS decreased after forest bathing trip. These results indicate that forest bathing trip has health effect on elderly COPD patients by reducing inflammation and stress level. Article Published Date : Feb 29, 2016

Effects of Forest Bathing on Cardiovascular and Metabolic Parameters in Middle-Aged Males. 📎

Abstract Title: Effects of Forest Bathing on Cardiovascular and Metabolic Parameters in Middle-Aged Males. Abstract Source: Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016 ;2016:2587381. Epub 2016 Jul 14. PMID: 27493670 Abstract Author(s): Qing Li, Maiko Kobayashi, Shigeyoshi Kumeda, Toshiya Ochiai, Takashi Miura, Takahide Kagawa, Michiko Imai, Zhiyu Wang, Toshiaki Otsuka, Tomoyuki Kawada Article Affiliation: Qing Li Abstract: In the present study, we investigated the effects of a forest bathing on cardiovascular and metabolic parameters. Nineteen middle-aged male subjects were selected after they provided informed consent. These subjects took day trips to a forest park in Agematsu, Nagano Prefecture, and to an urban area of Nagano Prefecture as control in August 2015. On both trips, they walked 2.6 km for 80 min each in the morning and afternoon on Saturdays. Blood and urine were sampled before and after each trip. Cardiovascular and metabolic parameters were measured. Blood pressure and pulse rate were measured during the trips. The Japanese version of the profile of mood states (POMS) test was conducted before, during, and after the trips. Ambient temperature and humidity were monitored during the trips. The forest bathing program significantly reduced pulse rate and significantly increased the score for vigor and decreased the scores for depression, fatigue, anxiety, and confusion. Urinary adrenaline after forest bathing showed a tendency toward decrease. Urinary dopamine after forest bathing was significantly lower than that after urban area walking, suggesting the relaxing effect of the forest bathing. Serum adiponectin after the forest bathing was significantly greater than that after urban area walking. Article Published Date : Dec 31, 2015

The Effects of Forest Therapy on Coping with Chronic Widespread Pain: Physiological and Psychological Differences between Participants in a Forest Therapy Program and a Control Group. 📎

Abstract Title: The Effects of Forest Therapy on Coping with Chronic Widespread Pain: Physiological and Psychological Differences between Participants in a Forest Therapy Program and a Control Group. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2016 ;13(3). Epub 2016 Feb 24. PMID: 26927141 Abstract Author(s): Jin-Woo Han, Han Choi, Yo-Han Jeon, Chong-Hyeon Yoon, Jong-Min Woo, Won Kim Article Affiliation: Jin-Woo Han Abstract: This study aimed to investigate the effects of a two-day forest therapy program on individuals with chronic widespread pain. Sixty one employees of a public organization providing building and facilities management services within the Seoul Metropolitan area participated in the study. Participants were assigned to an experimental group (n = 33) who participated in a forest therapy program or a control group (n = 28) on a non-random basis. Pre- and post-measures of heart rate variability (HRV), Natural Killer cell (NK cell) activity, self-reported pain using the visual analog scale (VAS), depression level using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and health-related quality of life measures using the EuroQol Visual Analog Scale (EQ-VAS) were collected in both groups. The results showed that participants in the forest therapy group, as compared to the control group, showed physiological improvement as indicated by a significant increase in some measures of HRV and an increase in immune competence as indicated by NK cell activity. Participants in the forest therapy group also reported significant decreases in pain and depression, and a significant improvement in health-related quality of life. These results support the hypothesis that forest therapy is an effective intervention to relieve pain and associated psychological and physiological symptoms in individuals with chronic widespread pain. Article Published Date : Dec 31, 2015

30 Days Wild: Development and Evaluation of a Large-Scale Nature Engagement Campaign to Improve Well-Being. 📎

Abstract Title: 30 Days Wild: Development and Evaluation of a Large-Scale Nature Engagement Campaign to Improve Well-Being. Abstract Source: PLoS One. 2016 ;11(2):e0149777. Epub 2016 Feb 18. PMID: 26890891 Abstract Author(s): Miles Richardson, Adam Cormack, Lucy McRobert, Ralph Underhill Article Affiliation: Miles Richardson Abstract: There is a need to increase people's engagement with and connection to nature, both for human well-being and the conservation of nature itself. In order to suggest ways for people to engage with nature and create a wider social context to normalise nature engagement, The Wildlife Trusts developed a mass engagement campaign, 30 Days Wild. The campaign asked people to engage with nature every day for a month. 12,400 people signed up for 30 Days Wild via an online sign-up with an estimated 18,500 taking part overall, resulting in an estimated 300,000 engagements with nature by participants. Samples of those taking part were found to have sustained increases in happiness, health, connection to nature and pro-nature behaviours. With the improvement in health being predicted by the improvement in happiness, this relationship was mediated by the change in connection to nature. Article Published Date : Dec 31, 2015

Physiological and Psychological Effects of a Forest Therapy Program on Middle-Aged Females. 📎

Abstract Title: Physiological and Psychological Effects of a Forest Therapy Program on Middle-Aged Females. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2015 Dec ;12(12):15222-32. Epub 2015 Dec 1. PMID: 26633447 Abstract Author(s): Hiroko Ochiai, Harumi Ikei, Chorong Song, Maiko Kobayashi, Takashi Miura, Takahide Kagawa, Qing Li, Shigeyoshi Kumeda, Michiko Imai, Yoshifumi Miyazaki Article Affiliation: Hiroko Ochiai Abstract: The natural environment is increasingly recognized as an effective counter to urban stress, and"Forest Therapy"has recently attracted attention as a relaxation and stress management activity with demonstrated clinical efficacy. The present study assessed the physiological and psychological effects of a forest therapy program on middle-aged females. Seventeen Japanese females (62.2± 9.4 years; mean ± standard deviation) participated in this experiment. Pulse rate, salivary cortisol level, and psychological indices were measured on the day before forest therapy and on the forest therapy day. Pulse rate and salivary cortisol were significantly lower than baseline following forest therapy, indicating that subjects were in a physiologically relaxed state. Subjects reported feeling significantly more"comfortable,""relaxed,"and"natural"according to the semantic differential (SD) method. The Profile of Mood State (POMS) negative mood subscale score for"tension-anxiety"was significantly lower, while that for"vigor"was significantly higher following forest therapy. Our study revealed that forest therapy elicited a significant (1) decrease in pulse rate, (2) decrease in salivary cortisol levels, (3) increase in positive feelings, and (4) decrease in negative feelings. In conclusion, there are substantial physiological and psychological benefits of forest therapy on middle-aged females. Article Published Date : Nov 30, 2015

Physiological and psychological effects of forest therapy on middle-aged males with high-normal blood pressure. 📎

Abstract Title: Physiological and psychological effects of forest therapy on middle-aged males with high-normal blood pressure. Abstract Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2015 Mar ;12(3):2532-42. Epub 2015 Feb 25. PMID: 25809507 Abstract Author(s): Hiroko Ochiai, Harumi Ikei, Chorong Song, Maiko Kobayashi, Ako Takamatsu, Takashi Miura, Takahide Kagawa, Qing Li, Shigeyoshi Kumeda, Michiko Imai, Yoshifumi Miyazaki Article Affiliation: Hiroko Ochiai Abstract: Time spent walking and relaxing in a forest environment ("forest bathing"or"forest therapy") has well demonstrated anti-stress effects in healthy adults, but benefits for ill or at-risk populations have not been reported. The present study assessed the physiological and psychological effects of forest therapy (relaxation and stress management activity in the forest) on middle-aged males with high-normal blood pressure. Blood pressure and several physiological and psychological indices of stress were measured the day before and approximately 2 h following forest therapy. Both pre- and post-treatment measures were conducted at the same time of day to avoid circadian influences. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure (BP), urinary adrenaline, and serum cortisol were all significantly lower than baseline following forest therapy (p<0.05). Subjects reported feeling significantly more"relaxed"and"natural"according to the Semantic Differential (SD) method. Profile of Mood State (POMS) negative mood subscale scores for"tension-anxiety,""confusion,"and"anger-hostility,"as well as the Total Mood Disturbance (TMD) score were significantly lower following forest therapy. These results highlight that forest is a promising treatment strategy to reduce blood pressure into the optimal range and possibly prevent progression to clinical hypertension in middle-aged males with high-normal blood pressure. Article Published Date : Feb 28, 2015
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Therapeutic Actions Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest)

NCBI pubmed

[Psychological relaxation effect of forest therapy: results of field experiments in 19 forests in Japan involving 228 participants].

Related Articles [Psychological relaxation effect of forest therapy: results of field experiments in 19 forests in Japan involving 228 participants]. Nihon Eiseigaku Zasshi. 2011 Sep;66(4):670-6 Authors: Tsunetsugu Y, Park BJ, Lee J, Kagawa T, Miyazaki Y Abstract OBJECTIVES: In the present study, we aimed to clarify the psychological effects of shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest) by conducting field experiments. METHODS: The experiments were conducted in 19 forested and urban areas in Japan during the 2007-2010 period. Twelve male students participated at each of the 19 areas (a total of 228 persons). Subjective ratings of "comfortable-uncomfortable", "soothing-stimulating", and "natural-artificial" feelings were conducted after each of the participants had viewed the scenery for 15 min in the forested and urban areas. A postviewing questionnaire on "stressed-refreshed" feelings was also administered and the Profile of Mood State (POMS) questionnaire was employed to assess six aspects of mood before and after viewing the sceneries. RESULTS: The forest environments were perceived as significantly more "comfortable", "soothing", and "natural" than the urban environments after viewing the sceneries. The score for "refreshed feeling" was also significantly higher in the forested areas. The score for the "vigor" subscale of POMS was significantly higher after viewing the scenery in the forested areas, whereas the scores for negative feelings such as "tension-anxiety", "depression-dejection", "anger-hostility", "fatigue", and "confusion" significantly decreased. CONCLUSION: Collectively, these results suggest that the forest environments have significant beneficial and relaxing effects on human's moods compared with the urban environments. PMID: 21996766 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Trends in research related to "Shinrin-yoku" (taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing) in Japan.

Related Articles Trends in research related to "Shinrin-yoku" (taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing) in Japan. Environ Health Prev Med. 2010 Jan;15(1):27-37 Authors: Tsunetsugu Y, Park BJ, Miyazaki Y Abstract "Shinrin-yoku", which can be defined as "taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing", has been receiving increasing attention in Japan in recent years for its capacity to provide relaxation and reduce stress. Since 2004, the authors of this paper have been involved in an investigation designed to ascertain the physiological effects of "Shinrin-yoku" within the framework of the "Therapeutic Effects of Forests" project. We have conducted physiological experiments, both in actual forests and in the laboratory, to elucidate the physiological effects on individuals of exposure to the total environment of forests or to only certain elements of this environment, such as the odor of wood, the sound of running stream water, and the scenery of the forest. We have obtained physiological measurements of central nervous activity, autonomic nervous activity, and biomarkers reflecting stress response that can be applied in this line of approach. Using these measurements, we have summarized the separate elements of forests in terms of the five senses. We have also reviewed a selection of field studies and introduced a number of results from ongoing projects as well as those from early studies. Future perspectives are also discussed. PMID: 19585091 [PubMed]

The physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing): evidence from field experiments in 24 forests across Japan.

Related Articles The physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing): evidence from field experiments in 24 forests across Japan. Environ Health Prev Med. 2010 Jan;15(1):18-26 Authors: Park BJ, Tsunetsugu Y, Kasetani T, Kagawa T, Miyazaki Y Abstract This paper reviews previous research on the physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the forest atmosphere or forest bathing), and presents new results from field experiments conducted in 24 forests across Japan. The term Shinrin-yoku was coined by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries in 1982, and can be defined as making contact with and taking in the atmosphere of the forest. In order to clarify the physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku, we conducted field experiments in 24 forests across Japan. In each experiment, 12 subjects (280 total; ages 21.7 +/- 1.5 year) walked in and viewed a forest or city area. On the first day, six subjects were sent to a forest area, and the others to a city area. On the second day, each group was sent to the other area as a cross-check. Salivary cortisol, blood pressure, pulse rate, and heart rate variability were used as indices. These indices were measured in the morning at the accommodation facility before breakfast and also both before and after the walking (for 16 +/- 5 min) and viewing (for 14 +/- 2 min). The R-R interval was also measured during the walking and viewing periods. The results show that forest environments promote lower concentrations of cortisol, lower pulse rate, lower blood pressure, greater parasympathetic nerve activity, and lower sympathetic nerve activity than do city environments. These results will contribute to the development of a research field dedicated to forest medicine, which may be used as a strategy for preventive medicine. PMID: 19568835 [PubMed]

Physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest) in an old-growth broadleaf forest in Yamagata Prefecture, Japan.

Related Articles Physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest) in an old-growth broadleaf forest in Yamagata Prefecture, Japan. J Physiol Anthropol. 2007 Mar;26(2):135-42 Authors: Tsunetsugu Y, Park BJ, Ishii H, Hirano H, Kagawa T, Miyazaki Y Abstract The physiological effects of "Shinrin-yoku" (taking in the atmosphere of the forest) were examined by investigating blood pressure, pulse rate, heart rate variability (HRV), salivary cortisol concentration, and immunoglobulin A concentration in saliva. Subjective feelings of being "comfortable", "calm", and "refreshed" were also assessed by questionnaire. The subjects were 12 male university students aged from 21 to 23 (mean+/-SD: 22.0+/-1.0). The physiological measurements were conducted six times, i.e., in the morning and evening before meals at the place of accommodation, before and after the subjects walked a predetermined course in the forest and city areas for 15 minutes, and before and after they sat still on a chair watching the scenery in the respective areas for 15 minutes. The findings were as follows. In the forest area compared to the city area, 1) blood pressure and pulse rate were significantly lower, and 2) the power of the HF component of the HRV tended to be higher and LF/(LF+HF) tended to be lower. Also, 3) salivary cortisol concentration was significantly lower in the forest area. These physiological responses suggest that sympathetic nervous activity was suppressed and parasympathetic nervous activity was enhanced in the forest area, and that "Shinrin-yoku" reduced stress levels. In the subjective evaluation, 4) "comfortable", "calm", and "refreshed" feelings were significantly higher in the forest area. The present study has, by conducting physiological investigations with subjective evaluations as supporting evidence, demonstrated the relaxing and stress-relieving effects of "Shinrin-yoku". PMID: 17435356 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest)--using salivary cortisol and cerebral activity as indicators.

Related Articles Physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest)--using salivary cortisol and cerebral activity as indicators. J Physiol Anthropol. 2007 Mar;26(2):123-8 Authors: Park BJ, Tsunetsugu Y, Kasetani T, Hirano H, Kagawa T, Sato M, Miyazaki Y Abstract The purpose of this study is to examine the physiological effects of Shinrin-yoku (taking in the atmosphere of the forest). The subjects were 12 male students (22.8+/-1.4 yr). On the first day of the experiments, one group of 6 subjects was sent to a forest area, and the other group of 6 subjects was sent to a city area. On the second day, each group was sent to the opposite area for a cross check. In the forenoon, the subjects were asked to walk around their given area for 20 minutes. In the afternoon, they were asked to sit on chairs and watch the landscapes of their given area for 20 minutes. Cerebral activity in the prefrontal area and salivary cortisol were measured as physiological indices in the morning at the place of accommodation, before and after walking in the forest or city areas during the forenoon, and before and after watching the landscapes in the afternoon in the forest and city areas, and in the evening at the place of accommodation. The results indicated that cerebral activity in the prefrontal area of the forest area group was significantly lower than that of the group in the city area after walking; the concentration of salivary cortisol in the forest area group was significantly lower than that of the group in the city area before and after watching each landscape. The results of the physiological measurements show that Shinrin-yoku can effectively relax both people's body and spirit. PMID: 17435354 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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