Conventional wisdom has held that proximity to the ocean promotes better health. In the 1700s and 1800s, doctors would routinely refer patients with all sorts of complaints to “bathing hospitals” or seaside resorts where the treatments they received might involve baths in seawater.
Today, doctors are less likely to prescribe a San Diego sailboat tour as a treatment for a medical ailment. Nevertheless, by sending patients to the seashore, those 18th- and 19th-century doctors may have been onto something after all. Until recently, there had been little scientific study into the health effects of living by the ocean. However, medical researchers have conducted some clinical trials and found that the health benefits of oceanside living may be very real.
The air by the seaside has frequently been touted as beneficial for one’s health. Research now shows that ocean air has less irritants and so may help people with respiratory complaints like asthma or allergies to breathe better. Sea air also contains negative ions, which help your body balance your levels of serotonin, a mood hormone, and help you absorb oxygen at an accelerated rate. Therefore, it may not only be the excitement of whale watching San Diego that makes you feel so energized and alert; it may also be the air you are breathing.
There are many physical activities that you can perform at the beach or in the water, and the sunshine and nice weather may motivate you more strongly to join in. However, you do not need to do something particularly difficult or strenuous to get a workout at the beach. Simply walking on the sand exercises your body more than walking on a city sidewalk or across a park or lawn. This is because the surface of the sand is uneven and the muscles of your legs must work harder to provide a counterbalance than they do when you walk across a relatively flat surface.
Have you ever used bath salts in the tub to help heal and revitalize your skin? Many of those same elements, such as potassium chloride and magnesium, are also present in seawater. Therefore, spending time in the water can help improve your skin’s appearance and keep it hydrated with more elasticity.
Sea water also contains amino acids, vitamins, and minerals that help promote immunity. These can be absorbed into your skin and help you fight off disease and prevent future infections.
Studies have shown that being near the ocean can have a calming effect on the body, although it is not yet entirely clear why. Some believe that brain patterns are altered by listening to the sound of the waves, which can lull you into a state of deep relaxation.
However, the sound of the waves may not tell the whole story. People undergoing dental procedures who merely looked at pictures of beaches and ocean scenes reported lower levels of anxiety and pain.
For many people, work is a significant source of stress. Therefore, if you are an employer looking for company outing ideas San Diego, you may want to consider a beach day or a sailing trip as something that could benefit your employees and you.