Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 November 2019

Take a walk on the wild side to recall what’s important

Our readers have their say on nature apps, vitamin D and India's show of strength

The practice of Shinrin-yoku, or 'forest bathing', is important to the Japanese who make it a point to spend time in nature. iStockphoto.com
The practice of Shinrin-yoku, or 'forest bathing', is important to the Japanese who make it a point to spend time in nature. iStockphoto.com

I read your story Getting UAE teenagers to embrace nature? There’s an app for that (January 26) and I would like to ask people: when was the last you saw a sunset? Or waves crashing into each other? Or felt the cold morning mist against your face? You will probably recall that it has been a long time since you have felt the pleasure of our beautiful and peaceful nature.

Our own environment has become so foreign to us, that it feels as if we are all living in our own bubbles – bubbles that only consist of social media, or anxiety for upcoming exams, social prejudices, or maybe a new TV series, and procrastination in huge amounts. If we could just take a second to pop these bubbles, we would notice how much we are missing. We are missing the good things outside our bubble, the calm, serene environment of nature, the sound of dry leaves crunching under our feet. Our bodies are aching for a breath of fresh air, away from the troubles of the bubble and to be on the other side, which consists of nature, taking long, therapeutic walks to the beach or cycling and trekking through a forest.

These are the things which help us overcome the fears and negativity present in our bubbles. They are the things that help us survive on this Earth, if we could just remember to take a look outside our bubbles.

Qurratulain Anwer, Delhi Private School, Sharjah

A vitamin D deficit in the sun isn’t all that unusual

Regarding your story about vitamin D deficiency being linked to diabetes (September 29, 2018), in some countries the majority of women spend most of time at their homes, so their exposure to sunlight is very limited, which causes those deficiencies. In one recent study, Women with a vitamin D deficiency are nearly twice as likely to experience pain in their legs, ribs or joints compared to those with blood levels in the normal range. Low levels of vitamin D are a major contributing factor to bone disease and lower back pain. Different case studies have shown that very low levels can cause fatigue, which has a severe negative effect on the quality of life.

In most of cases, women who complain of chronic daytime fatigue and headaches are found to have very low vitamin D. That puts them at higher risk of cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment in older women, asthma and cancer. A vitamin D deficiency can also lead to rickets in children and both osteomalacia and osteoporosis in women.

Vitamin D can play a major role in the prevention and treatment of a number of different diseases, including type 1 and type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, hypertension and multiple sclerosis.

Dr Faisal Khan, Al Dar Hospital, Saudi Arabia

A great show of military strength did India proud

I refer to your story Republic Day: India celebrates with display of military might (January 26). As one of the largest democracies in the world, India’s military strength and international relationships are laudable.

K Ragavan, Bengaluru

Updated: January 27, 2019 07:48 PM