For stress relief, there is no substitute for views of nature, the Seattle Times reports. A University of Washington study found that students who faced a stressful task returned to a normal heart rate most quickly while looking out the window at trees and grass.
But contrary to other studies, looking at a plasma TV displaying an image of the view from the window decreased heart rates as much as looking at a plaster wall. "The thinking is that when you digitize nature, you get all the benefits of nature," said the paper's author. "But they are not substitutions for nature."