You now have the perfect excuse to move to a beach house.
A study by the University of Exeter in the UK found that people who live less than a kilometer (about two-thirds of a mile) from the coast are 22 percent less likely to have symptoms of a mental health disorder compared to those who lived much farther away (50 kilometers, or 31 miles), Metro reported.
The study surveyed over 25,000 people from various economic backgrounds. While the study generally saw an improvement in mood and mental health across the board, it also found that moving to a coastal environment is particularly good for people from low-income households. About 40 percent of people from this particular demographic alone were less likely to have symptoms of a mental health disorder, according to Metro.
Is it the sound of crashing waves, the sand beneath your feet, or perhaps the clear blue color of the water that helps improve your mood? At the moment, it’s hard to say what specifically about the sea is good for a person’s mental health.
But researchers concluded that access to “blue spaces,” or spaces by the sea or water, may play a big role in a person’s mental health. While many studies have shown that getting out into nature, even for just 20 minutes, can improve your mood, this specific finding could make a big difference in helping a person’s well being, especially if they have a low income, as well as the coastal environments themselves.