Healing Places, Healing Spaces
Beginning with Dr. Roger Ulrich, Center for Health Systems and Design, in "View Through a Window..." nature/health research has highlighted the "obvious" but difficult to quantify benefits of natural settings (including urban forests) for physical and psychological well being.
Dr. Esther Sternberg is Research Director at the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Her books include Healing Spaces: The Science of Place and Well Being, and The Balance Within: The Science Connecting Health & Emotions
Listen to: The Science of Healing Places with Dr. Sternberg, On Being (30Sep12 American Public Media via NPR). "The light and smells in places like hospitals can often depress us. And, our favorite room at home keeps us sane. But why? Immunologist Esther Sternberg explains the scientific research revealing how physical spaces create stress and make us sick — and how good design can trigger our "brain’s internal pharmacies" and help heal us." [APM On Being Website]
Dr. Kathleen Wolf, Projects Director at Human Dimensions of Urban Forestry and Urban Greening (School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, University of Washington) documents and investigates the human/nature connection at Green Cities: Good Health. "Metro nature - including trees, parks, gardens, and natural areas - enhance quality of life in cities and towns. The experience of nature improves human health and well-being in many ways. Nearly 40 years of scientific studies tell us how." [K Wolf Website]
Photo by Joel Bedford, Flickr, Creative Commons by-nd