British expats: Moving to Spain could improve Britons mood – top 10 places to go

A new study has found that moving to Spain could have incredible mental health benefits. Many British expats choose to move to coastal areas in Spain.

The Mental State of the World report looked at the state of mental health across 34 countries around the world.

The team looked at five important areas of mental health including mood and outlook, social self, drive and motivation.

Countries across Latin America, Europe, Africa, Middle East, North America and the UK were analysed.

The study found that mental health declined across the world during the global pandemic by around eight percent.

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Spain was ranked as the second highest country in the world for good mental health, following Venezuela.

The UK performed poorly, ranking in the bottom 10 countries along with Ireland, USA and Canada.

Countries with strong economies generally performed poorly in the ranking, suggesting that chasing growth may not be good for mental wellbeing.

Some British expats who have chosen to relocate to Spain say that the move had a positive impact on their mental health.


An increase in serotonin can help people stave off Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which can have a negative impact on mental health.

Sunshine also has positive physical health benefits including providing an increase in Vitamin D levels.

Many British expats say that Spain offers a slower pace of life than in the UK with less pressure to rush around.

For many Britons, a slower pace has a positive impact on mental health although others may find it stressful.

The Mediterranean diet is one of the world’s healthiest which can help to boost an expat’s mental health.

Rich in vegetables, fruit, fish and unsaturated fats, the diet is a fantastic way to stay healthy in older age.

Living close to the sea, as many expats in Spain do, can also provide benefits to mental health.

Experts say the sea can help people to practice mindfulness and even reduce anxiety and depression.

Mental health top 10 (Mental State of the World)

  1. Venezuela
  2. Spain
  3. Puerto Rico
  4. DRC
  5. Switzerland
  6. Peru
  7. Argentina
  8. Belgium
  9. Singapore
  10. Ecuador


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