The   more I research into the positive feelings of wellbeing when we are bathed in  green spaces, the more I read about oxytocin, our human magic hormone… and it all happens via our visual and non-visual pathway in the brain!

Oxytocin has many functions – it helps in childbirth, breast feeding and bonding but also helps to enhanced sociability, trust and feelings of calmness. Oxytocin  reduces our blood pressure and cortisol levels resulting in beautiful calm states of wellbeing. How does this happen?


When we take walks in the countryside we are bathed in natures backdrop canopy of green, whose wavelength  falls  into the shorter side of the visible spectrum. Green  has a magical effect on our brains.


The green wavelengths of light  enter our eyes and fall onto the nerve cells in the retina. Photoreceptor cells called cones are sensitive to different coloured wavelengths and  these cones cells send nerve signals to the hypothalamus located deep in the the brain. The amazing hypothalamus nerve cells are activated to secrete oxytocin which is stored in the posterior pituitary gland and then subsequently released into the blood stream. What happens then…..


This circulating oxytocin modulates the parasympathetic nerves responsible for reducing our blood pressure and cortisol levels. The net result we feel calm, less anxious and more sociable and improved anti-flamatory effects.

Who wouldn’t want more of this magic oxytocin – take a walk in nature and make some oxytocin to feel good!