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Pastoral Escapes

Protect your cells, reduce blood pressure and lower your risk of blood clots and coronary artery blockages.


Michael P. Sherman, MD, PhD; Diana Superfin, MD; Ann Wexler, MD; Amir Modarressi, MD


Three Peaceful

According to the “biophilia hypothesis,” humans feel rejuvenated when exposed to nature. Put that theory to the test at the following nearby locations.

The Gardens at Heather Farm
Just pull up a bench, listen to the fountains and gaze around you. Even in cold weather, the bright-red pineapple sage in the Sensory Garden attracts hummingbirds. Don’t forget to scratch a leaf to smell where it got its name. 1540 Marchbanks Drive, Walnut Creek; gardenshf.org

Mount Diablo State Park
Broadening your perspective is easy when you’re on top of Mount Diablo, but you don’t have to go to the summit. Just head up Mount Diablo Scenic Boulevard from Danville for a great view from Curry Point, about 1.5 miles past the entrance station, where there’s a pullout for parking, or park at Rock City (barely a mile past the entrance station) to check Artist Point; parks.ca.gov/?page_id=517

San Damiano Retreat
Find serenity in the hills above the San Ramon Valley. Sign in at the front desk, then sit by the fountain, walk the adjacent meditation labyrinth or otherwise de-stress. Hiking trails available from dawn to dusk. 710 Highland Drive, Danville; sandamiano.org


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