Happy National Picnic Month!
Temperatures are rising and early summer showers are (hopefully!) on their way out. This time of year, public parks across the country are filled with families and friends enjoying the outdoors, so what better time to pack a picnic? In celebration of National Picnic Month, we’ve created a mouth-watering slideshow of picnicking Levitteers across the nation!
Did you know picnicking not only brings families and friends together to enjoy nature while satisfying one’s hunger, but also brings people a slew of health benefits to boot? Benefits include:
- Enhancing communication: Communication during meals can increase building positive relationships and allow opportunities to understand one another. Family dinners are more than just enjoyable, they lead to “fewer emotional and behavioral problems, greater emotional well-being, more trusting and helpful behaviors towards others and higher life satisfaction.”
- Developing healthy eating habits: Typical basket meals include fruits, vegetables, grains and other nutritious foods, leaving for a sustainable, home-prepped meal.
- Bone and mood booster: The sun provides vitamin D, which acts as a natural mood booster, while helping bones gain strength in order for people to live long, healthy lives.
- Stress reliever: Relaxing in the sunshine diminishes stress and anxiety, creating a calmer, more pleasant day.
- Healthy lifestyle: Through eating a healthy meal on the grass, children are introduced to outdoor physical activities and become more familiar with nature. An article by HJ News indicates, “a study published by the National Academy of Sciences found participants who spent 90 minutes in a natural environment reported lower levels of anxiety and reduced neural activity in the subgenual prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain associated with mental illness.”
When it comes to health benefits, picnics and music go hand-in-hand. An article published by ABC News states that music helps with attention span and memory, releases dopamine—causing one to feel happier and even has the ability to calm people down. Music also lowers heart rates and blood pressure and promotes physical activity such as dancing, while the outdoors alleviate pain, strengthen immune systems and sharpen thinking, as noted in our recently published article and research recap.
With picnics ranging from wicker baskets and blankets to coolers with small wooden tables, we are thrilled to celebrate National Picnic Month with Levitteers across the nation. Be sure to share your picnicking pics with us on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #musicmoves in the caption for a chance to win an iTunes gift card!