Foliage: why it’s good for body and mind – Feel good

The Foresta Umbra nature reserve, in the heart of the Gargano National Park. the Piedmontese Langhe; the Sentiero dello Spirito del Bosco in the Como region. the beech forest of Monte Cimino, in the province of Viterbo. the Monte Baldo Natural Park, in Trentino; the forests of the Beigua Geopark, in Liguria. These are just some of the Italian locations where you can immerse yourself in the kaleidoscope of autumn colors that are characteristic foliageTHE natural phenomenon due to the degradation of chlorophyll on the leaves of many trees, preparing for winter rest. Literally, the term philloma means “foliage”, but over time it has acquired a new, very poetic meaning, ending up creating a real form of tourism.

Because foliage is good

Several studies have shown this experience an immersion in naturewalking in the autumn forest, he is able to rebalance body and mind. “Symbolic of cosmic life, because they are connected to the earth but turned towards the sky, plants are equipped with their own energy, which is present at any time of the year,” he explains. Maria Cornelia Giordaniexpert in energy phytotherapy. “This energy is capable of regulating human energy, because stimulates the body’s natural self-healing abilities, which are constantly in action not only in wound repair mechanisms, but also in the spontaneous resolution of more serious pathologies”. It is no coincidence that trees are present in the history of every religion, in folk traditions around the world and in the iconography of sacred art: for example, hugging them (sylvotherapy) is a practice that unites very different and distant cultures, from Tibetans to American Indians. “The healing virtues of trees have been recognized since ancient times, and foliage can represent a unique practice for recovering that natural and inner harmony that is often undermined by everyday life.”

Power from color

During the foliage, Color therapy adds to the energy of the trees it is exercised by the colors in which we are immersed: yellow, orange, red, violet, brown. “In a black and white world we would definitely be depressed, because color is light, healing, energy. Moreover, the autumn colors are anything but gloomy“, the expert wishes to emphasize.

For example, the it is yellow it is associated with the wisdom of thoughtsof words and deeds: loved by extroverted, vital people who enthusiastically welcome new things and have high expectations for the future. Orange, on the other hand, is the color of sociability, playground, growth, renewal: it is a symbol of inner harmony, physical health, trust in oneself and others, artistic creativity and ambition. Yet, Red has always been a symbol of passion, courage, instinct and ancestral urges: represents willpower, vitality and exuberance. “Colors like these teach us that change, of which autumn is the preeminent symbol, is not necessarily negative. Just as nature does, so we must learn let fallto make room for the new, for “strip ourselves” of what is not important to live better in the present, without resisting the flow of things.”

We ask the plants for help

As we walk among the trees, we ask them for help with a silent prayer, spoken mentally, in which we ask for the transference of their positive energies so that we can “absorb” them and use them to balance those that are out of harmony within us.

“Each factory has specific capabilities. For example, theMaple It is useful in depressive situations, in changes and to free ourselves from addictions. The cypress It can support us in times of despair when we cannot see a way out. The glycine It helps us to be introspective, find peace, overcome fears and live in the present. Having said that, let instinct guide us» calls Jordani.

“Our body knows what it needs, so let’s get closer to the trees we instinctively feel drawn to. Although to varying degrees, all are anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antidepressant, detoxifying, immunostimulating: their scope is almost infinite, even if they are among the most powerful spruce, maple, ash, hazel, walnut and poplar». Obviously, energy should not be understood as a magic wand that solves every problem, but rather as a relief from the symptoms that torment us, while it is up to us to change the lifestyle or thoughts that caused the disorder.

Let’s keep listening

During the walk in the forest, we hear the sounds, the crunch of dry leaves under our steps, the wind licking the plants. “But we also exploit perfumes and smells in the air, because the woody essential oils act on our respiratory system and strengthen our defenses against external factors,” assures Giordani. It is no coincidence that, to continue living the forest experience at home, we can use pure essential oils to evaporate into the air for the treatment of minor seasonal diseases. Among many things, cypress is anti-catarrhal and expectorant, while pine is tonic and relieves stress.

Foliage helps us rediscover wonder

Admiring the spectacle of foliage also teaches us to admire, as we did as children. Observing nature makes us feel comfortable and reduces everyday worries: there are even studies that show how you can benefit from a relaxing effect even just by observing an autumn forest from afar.

The first scientific evidence dates back to 1984 when Roger Ulrich, a physician at the University of Texas, observed that patients admitted to rooms with windows overlooking the tree-lined park outside the hospital had fewer postoperative complications, complained of less pain, took fewer pain relievers, and had longer recovery times. small. “But even simple paintings of natural landscapes can help. Ulrich himself demonstrated this in 1993, showing better recovery for intensive care patients who could admire photographs of bright landscapes with meadows, trees and waterways,” concludes Maria Cornelia Giordani. “Foliage is the example of how nature is always available to uswithout asking for anything in return.”

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