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Taking in the Greenery

Wanting to experience nature is in part heritable, the Guardian reports.

An international team led by researchers at the National University of Singapore conducted a twin study of nature experiences. As they report in PLOS Biology, they found using the TwinsUK panel that monozygotic twins were more similar to each other in terms of how often and for how long they visit public nature spaces or gardens than dizygotic twins. The researchers further estimate that nature orientation is about 46 percent heritable.

The researchers note, though, that other factors such as travel time to such settings and the quality of those nature spaces as well as socioeconomic factors may also affect how often someone seeks out time in nature. They also found, though, that heritability declined with age.

"Spending time in nature links to better health and wellbeing," first author Chia-chen Chang from NUS tells the Guardian. "A twin study shows that a person's desire to be in nature and how often they experience it are influenced by both genes and personal experiences."

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