There are many benefits to building a sunroom, but did you know that improving your health is one of them? A sunroom has a positive effect on your physical and mental well-being, and in ways that may surprise you.
Sunlight Health Benefits
Lowers Blood Pressure
Research carried out at the Universities of Southampton and Edinburgh in 2013 showed that exposing skin to sunlight may help to reduce blood pressure, cutting the risk of heart attack and stroke. During the study, individuals were exposed to UVA light, which is the type of ultraviolet light you receive through your sunroom windows. In people with normal blood pressure, the difference was statistically significant at two to five points, and the operators of the study have hypothesized that the difference may be even greater in people already prone to high blood pressure.
Strengthens Immune System
Researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center discovered that sunlight, through a mechanism separate from vitamin D production, energizes T cells that play a central role in human immunity. According to Gerard Ahern, associate professor in Georgetown’s Department of Pharmacology and Physiology, “T cells, whether they are helper or killer, need to move to do their work, which is to get to the site of an infection and orchestrate a response.. This study shows that sunlight directly activates key immune cells by increasing their movement.”
Sunlight actually has a profound effect on your mood and mental health through a number of mechanisms, including affecting your serotonin, endorphins, and nitric oxide levels. According to a paper published in the journal Dermato-Endocrinology, ultraviolet (UV) light stimulates epidermal cells (keratinocytes) to make beta-endorphins, which have a mood-boosting effect. Serotonin is also released in response to sunlight, which helps elevate your mood and energy. Further, nitric oxide (NO) is generated in your skin by UVA, and influences your body in a number of beneficial ways. It acts as a natural antioxidant and lowers inflammation, which is thought to have a positive effect on mental health, since depression is strongly linked to chronic, low-grade inflammation.
Boosts Energy and Productivity
Mitochondria are the energy producing power plants within our cells.
They generate the majority of the ATP (adenosine triphosphate) that our cells use for energy to complete everyday tasks like walking, sprinting, working, talking, etc. In short, mitochondria are required in order for us to do anything.
Sunlight is one of the most powerful mitochondrial boosters we have, and it’s a free and easy way to manage our mitochondria. Sunlight triggers changes inside our cells, boosting mitochondria production. This energy boost from sunlight exposure contributes to increased productivity, which in itself can also improve your mood.
Sunroom Anti-Stress Health Benefits
Chronic stress has many detrimental effects on our physical and mental health. Fortunately, there are many activities well-suited to a sunroom that provide stress relief:
Fitness Center or Home Gym
A sunroom makes a wonderful fitness center or home gym. The sunny, open environment encourages people to exercise regularly, resulting in the following benefits:
Improves mood and decreases feelings of depression, anxiety and stress.
Produces endorphins, which reduces the perception of pain.
Boosts “feel good” chemicals (dopamine, serotonin) in your brain.
Helps with weight loss by increasing your metabolic rate.
Maintains strong muscles and bones.
Increases energy levels.
Reduces risk of chronic disease by improving insulin sensitivity, cardiovascular fitness, body composition, and decreasing blood pressure and blood fat levels.
Provides antioxidant protection and promotes blood flow, which can protect your skin and delay signs of aging.
Improves brain function and protects memory and thinking skills.
Helps with relaxation and sleep quality, as well as stimulating recuperative processes during sleep.
Yoga and Meditation Retreat
You may have set up your sunroom as a yoga and meditation retreat. These are some of the health benefits from this practice:
Improves flexibility, correcting posture and eliminating pain.
Builds muscle strength and prevents cartilage and joint breakdown.
Betters your bone health.
Drains your lymphs and boosts immunity.
Drops your blood pressure.
Lowers your cortisol levels.
Increases blood flow, gets more oxygen to your cells, and helps prevent the formation of blood clots.
Lowers blood sugar and bad cholesterol, while boosting good cholesterol.
Helps you focus, solve problems, and learn and recall information better.
Develops calmness and peace of mind.
You can decorate your sunroom to reflect a favorite vacation destination. If that’s a cottage or tropical resort, add a hammock and a music system, and play the sound of ocean waves or relaxing music while you take a nap. Or maybe you prefer a cabin with lots of natural wood, plants and a wood-burning stove. No matter how you decorate, you’ve created a vacation retreat where you can de-stress.
Install a big screen TV in your sunroom, and relax watching the movies, shows, and sports you enjoy with your family. Perhaps you love playing poker or pool — bring in a poker or pool table, and schedule game days or nights with your friends.
Craft or Hobby Room
Hobbies and crafts add pleasure to our lives, and help reduce stress. Set up your sunroom as a dedicated craft or hobby area so you don’t have to spend time moving materials in and out of makeshift storage. The natural lighting makes it easier to see for sewing, scrapbooking, model building, drawing, and many other activities.
A sunroom can be the perfect refuge for reading and sipping a cup of coffee. Furnish the room with a comfortable armchair, sofa, and some plants to create a stress-free environment for enjoying your favorite authors.
Other Sunroom Health Benefits
Some people build a sunroom to provide their family with a source of fresh, homegrown vegetables, herbs, and fruit throughout the year. Fresh organic food has a higher nutritional value, and is free of harmful pesticides, insecticides, and herbicides. Not only are you providing a healthy diet for you and your family year-round, you’re saving money compared to organic food prices at the grocery store.
Protection From the Environment
You can enjoy a pool party, a barbecue, or just a warm summer day while relaxing inside your sunroom. In between dips in the pool and flipping the steaks, your sunroom will keep you cool and free from heat exhaustion and sunburn. Neither will you have to worry about disease-carrying mosquitoes, insects, or flies. Allergy sufferers can find relief from sneezing and itching while enjoying the sunshine and outdoor view.
Call Sunshine Sunrooms at (972) 243-5390 for all your sunroom design, construction, and repair needs. Click here to request a quote.