Great news for aquarium lovers: it’s not just a hobby or for aesthetics, it’s actually good for your health too! A new study offers evidence that watching fish in an aquarium reduces heart rate and blood pressure, leaving the observer more relaxed and with less stress. If you have ever sat and watched fish swimming gracefully through the features of their aquarium, or watched the corals wave gently with the water’s movement, then you’ve probably already felt the hypnotic and calming affects yourself.
British scientists at Plymouth University and the University of Exeter measured subjects’ physical and mental reactions before and after observing fish at the National Marine Aquarium. The results show a significant reduction in heart rate and blood pressure after watching the aquarium compared to their measurements immediately before. The mental state of subjects was even more improved if they observed aquariums that had a high number of fish.
In his book “Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do”, renowned marine biologist and author Wallace J. Nichols quotes the following:
“I wondered whether water is a mirror for our darker emotions as much as it is an engine for our happiness. Water quiets all the noise, all the distractions, and connects you to your own thoughts.”
So if you are like most, and could use less stress in your life, consider getting an aquarium! Check out all the great resources here on ReefNation.com for everything you need to get started.
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