The ocean covers seventy per cent of the earth and its importance is unmistakable. It’s an enormous source of food for much of the world, it acts as a carbon sink, it supports billions of lives and even provides the perfect place for sailing surfing or swimming.
In the Victorian era here in Britain, it was a common occurrence for families to leave their towns and cities in the holidays, to spend time down by the sea. Back then, they were aware of spending time in the clean ocean air was good for you, and from the large numbers of seaside resorts, towns and attractions across the world, it’s a sentiment that still stands pretty strong today. The simplicity of fresh air and cold water can do more for us than we might originally suspect.
As humans, we are drawn to bodies of water, to lakes and river and indeed the sea. How many of spent our childhoods collecting shells or running from waves? And how many of us notice a huge improvement in our health and wellbeing after spending time in the sea? A lot of us, I’d wager. The sea can help to improve our health in so many ways and with travel still a restriction, there’s no reason why not to spend a few days with your toes in the sand (though maybe wait until summer).
Environmental psychology is the study of how the natural environment makes us feel, think and behave, and scientists in this area are discovering the tangible benefits of breathing in the fresh sea air.” – Deborah Cracknell
I always noticed that my acne cleared up after spending a few days in the sea. And it does! Rich in magnesium, iodine and sodium, seawater is great for keeping skin clear and clean. It is also believed to help with eczema and psoriasis, reducing inflammation and keeping skin hydrated and moisturized. Seawater also has antiseptic properties, good for helping to heal small wounds.
Salty seawater can clear out mucus, opening up your sinuses and providing relief.
As well as the handy little compounds that get absorbed when in the sea, the physical act of being in the cold water is great for your immune system.
Aches and Pains:
Many will tell you that being in the sea is a great way to relieve joint and muscle pain and can-do wonders for easing arthritis. The high magnesium content can also help to relax your muscles.
Perhaps one the biggest reason to hit the beach is the relaxed state of mind it gives you. Provided you don’t have to fight a seagull for your chips whilst you’re there. The magnesium in seawater helps you to relax, reduces feelings of stress or anxiety and can promote a better night’s sleep. Being out in nature has been proven to assist with coping with mental health issues such as depression, and combined with the mineral rich seawater, it’s no wonder so many of us feel so at ease when we’re by the sea, and so reluctant to leave it. The sea is also a terrific place to practice meditation. With the rhythmic waves and endless horizon, it’s ideal for emptying your mind and finding a sense of peace.
The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears or the sea.” – Karen Blixen
Swimming, surfing and walking along the cliffs and dunes are also all terrific forms of exercise; get the blood pumping and get at one with nature. A natural resource for mind, body and soul.
More than ever, we should be making sure to protect our sea and keep it clean. Read more about sea pollution and how it affects here.