“It’s time for a reminder: timber isn’t just versatile, attractive, and good for the planet… it’s good for you, too!”
Timber can help you get healthy and stay that way. It’s a message you’ve probably heard before (certainly, if you were reading our blog a year ago) but it’s one that’s so important it bears repeating: people who live and work surrounded by natural materials get health benefits from it. So, without further ado, here are four ways in which being surrounded by wood is good for you!
- It lowers stress levels
There’s no getting away from it – modern life is stressful. Whether it’s the grind of your daily commute to work, the bad habit of checking your emails at bedtime, or just thinking too hard about negative news, we can all let it get on top of us sometimes. However, being surrounded by timber can help you take a load off (that’s why we’re always so chilled out!). According to the University of British Columbia “visual wood surfaces in a room lowered sympathetic nervous system activation.” What, you may ask, is the sympathetic nervous system? It’s the system that produces cortisol (the stress hormone) and puts your body in “fight or flight” mode. Another report confirms the findings saying timber causes “improvements to a person’s emotional state and level of self-expression, reduced blood pressure, heart rate, and stress levels.”
- It slows down ageing
Well, not aging itself – a year is still a year, whatever your house is built out of. But being surrounded by timber has been shows to reduce the physical and mental declines that accompany aging (which is why we’re all so youthful). From a study of 44 elderly people in Japan: “The regular use of wood products significantly increased the social interaction and activity levels of the elderly. Thus, use of wood products may enhance the possibility of preventing mental and physical decline in the frail elderly.”
- Timber gives you a healing factor
Okay, we realise this sounds far-fetched… but there really is credible research out there suggesting that timber can speed up the healing process. A landmark study in 1984 discovered this incredible fact when it noted that patients assigned to rooms with a view of a natural scene had shorter hospital stays than those facing brick walls. This just demonstrates, yet again, the importance of using natural materials in our surroundings.
- Timber makes you smarter
So, you’ve de-stressed, you’re no longer aging prematurely, and all those niggling aches and pains are a thing of the past. Surely timber can’t offer us any more benefits than this? Wrong – we’ve saved a major health upgrade for last. A study from Harvard University suggests that natural building materials can deliver massive amounts of improvement in our cognitive abilities. 24 participants were studied in “green office” conditions, then in “conventional” office conditions. The result? During their time in a green office, workers cognitive function scores increased by an incredible 61%! So, if you’ve ever wondered how we stay so sharp, now you know!
Whatever you’re working on, we can help you find the right timber for the job. Whether you know what you need or you could do with a bit of expert guidance, call us on 0845 50 50 311.