How Nature Helps You Lose Weight

This blog idea came to me as I was saturating myself in nature last week. What is it about nature that recharges us? Is it the stillness, the fresh air, no cement or less STRESS?

When you are relaxed, your body can recalibrate and your systems can play “catch up” on the necessary processes to support you toward the proper functioning and elevate you to your true energy capacity.

Here are 5 amazing gifts we receive from being in nature:

1. Sunshine & Vitamin D: I adore the sun. I recommend to get natural sunshine for 20 minutes daily on the majority of your body or at least your legs and arms. However, use common sense if you are more sensitive to the sun & amazing natural sunblock during peak hours. One brand I recommend is:

Vitamin D is a master hormone, which means it supports other hormones to do their necessary functions. Some symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency are mood swings, fatigue, general muscle pain and weakness, restless sleep, poor concentration, headaches, constipation or diarrhea. How much Vitamin D? Get your blood tested for 25-hydroxy Vitamin D, and the recommended range is way too LOW. The healthy range for optimal wellness is above 45ng/ml. If you are below 35 ng/ml, visit a practitioner to get your levels up with higher dosing. If you are between 35-45 ng/ml take 5,000 IU of Vitamin D3. Once you get your levels up, you can take 2,000 IU’s for maintenance.

2. Natural Hunger: When you are active in nature, you are not a slave to a time schedule.  You don’t have to take your lunch break at a certain hour, or be tempted with boredom snacking. You will notice your natural hunger kick in and that is when you will take a break to consume fuel. Even if you become hungry and don’t feel like taking a food break, this is when your body doesn’t have to use energy to digest and can utilize your fat storage for fuel.

3. Natural Activity: You know that feeling when you lay your head on your pillow after an active day? That is the activity your body desires versus always having a routine exercise plan. Sometimes just being outdoors and playful is more beneficial then the stair master. Being outdoors is always a great time to try something new. You will use new muscles, core strength, and surprise yourself. My new activity last week was a headstand during paddle board yoga on June Lake near Mammoth, CA with my dear friend guiding me.

4. Joy & Serotonin: Serotonin is a neurotransmitter and it’s functions are regulation of mood, appetite, sleep and cognitive functions, like, memory and learning.  Besides being active in the brain, everyone has a separate, mostly independent nervous system in their gut called the enteric nervous system. One hundred million nerve cells distributed throughout your digestive system direct movement through your intestines. This “second brain” can work independently of the one in your head, but there is an awful lot of talk back and forth between the two. Just think of butterflies in your stomach when you’re nervous, or how anxiety can easily trigger stomach distress. When you are relaxed and in nature your body can replenish its supply of serotonin.

5. Seasonal Fruit: I tend to see some of my clients “over-fruit”. Sugar can stay in your blood stream for 72 hours. Fruit is fructose and is a better form of sugar than some other alternatives. Your body can process fruit sugar more efficiently in the summer months due to the warmer weather and fruit being seasonal. Add in fruit when you feel over heated or are having intense sugar cravings. The melon family is best eaten alone, while other fruits with less water can be complimented with healthy fats, such as nuts.

Play outside,
Heather Fleming

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  1. great post, it emphasizes some the things we talked about on Skype the other day. thank you!