Snowy Landscapes Can Help Improve Body Image in Winter Wellness

Snowy Landscapes Can Help Improve Body Image in Winter Wellness ...

Body appreciation is the act of honoring and respecting oneself, regardless of its shape, size, or appearance. It is about recognizing, respecting, and treating one's body with kindness and care.

Snowy landscapes have shown that one's own body can be enhanced in a recent research.

Being in snowy locations, according to new research, increases one's body's appreciation.

Prior research has shown that being in green spaces, such as parks and forests, and 'blue environments,' such as along the coast or near a river, can enhance one's body image.

A new paper, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, has discovered that white spaces, in this case, a snow-covered forest, may have a similar effect.

The study was led by researchers from the Medical University of Silesia in Katowice, Poland, and Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) in the United Kingdom last winter. 87 women aged from 25 to 24 took part in small groups.

Participants completed a body appreciation test before and after walking in a snowy forest in Poland's Silesia region. They also completed self-compassion assessments before and after the walk.

Spending a short amount of time in nature — in this case about 40 minutes — results in greater body appreciation. Furthermore, people who scored high in self-compassion showed greater body appreciation.

It is also the first study to demonstrate that small groups can achieve these benefits.

“A body of evidence has been established that nature exposure — living near, frequenting, or engaging with environments such as forests and parks — is linked with a range of physical and psychological well-being benefits.

"However, ours is the first study to demonstrate that spending time in snow-covered environments improves body perception."

Viren Swami, ARU's senior author, believes that natural environments help to reduce negative appearance-related thoughts and divert attention away from an aesthetic appreciation of the body's functions. Body image is important not only in its own right, but also for psychological well-being.

"Our findings demonstrate the importance of ensuring that everyone has access to natural environments that are conducive to healthy body image, and demonstrate that being outside in nature is beneficial, regardless of the weather."

Kamila Czepczor-Bernat, Justyna Modrzejewska, and Viren Swami, "The Impact of a Woodland Walk on Body Image" ISSN 103390/ijerph192114548.

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