The Natural Health Service has developed products that can meet the requirements of health commissioners
“Populations that are exposed to the greenest environments also have lowest levels of health inequality related to income deprivation. Physical environments that promote good health might be important to reduce socio-economic health inequalities.”
Dr Richard Mitchell, Dr Frank Popham, The Lancet
Our five evidence based products use the natural environment as the basis for their delivery and effectiveness. These products promote wellbeing, encourage self-care and have the potential to assist in the prevention and treatment of some health conditions as part of a package of healthcare.
Natural Health Service Products:
1. Health Walks
Walking activities tailored to individual needs and designed to help meet target exercise and physical activity levels whilst improving mental wellbeing. Walking is one of the easiest ways to get more active, lose weight and become healthier breaking down barriers to positively influencing behavioural change.
2. Horticultural Therapy
Gardening and food growing activities in a social setting. Encourages moderate physical activity, and improves mental wellbeing through the nurturing of plants, giving a sense of purpose and achievement as well as the opportunity to connect with others reducing isolation.
3. Mindful Contact with Nature
Specifically developed nature based mindfulness practice. Delivered in local woodlands which support full immersion in the natural environment. Focused on individuals with mild to moderate mental health issues for whom mindfulness practice may form part of a programme to improve mental health and increase resilience from day-to-day triggers of stress, depression and anxiety. Shown to increase capacity to self-manage long-term chronic conditions.
4. Forest School
Targeted at increasing physical activity and improving mental wellbeing of young people. Forest School is an innovative approach to outdoor play and learning, inspiring individuals of any age through positive outdoor experiences. By participating in engaging, motivating and achievable tasks and activities, in a woodland environment, each participant has an opportunity to develop intrinsic motivation, emotional and social skills.
5. Healthy Conservation
Improving a participant’s strength and stamina through nature-based conservation projects, boosting practical skills and confidence, increasing physical activity and building social networks whilst benefiting local green spaces.