Skip to content
July 14, 2011 / Omar J. Peters

Cities and Health

Recently, a couple of articles have been released on studies looking at the effects of the built environment on health. And interestingly they are in conflict (at least on the surface).

The first is on mental health and explains that urbanites are more prone to stress:

“Imaging scans show that in city dwellers or people who grew up in urban areas, certain areas of the brain react more vigorously to stress. That may help explain how city life can boost the risks of schizophrenia and other mental disorders, researchers said.”

Another says when looking at rural, urban and suburban areas, urbanites come in second after suburbanites on the race to health:

“To be sure, city dwellers live with more air pollution and violent crime. They also have higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases and low-birth-weight babies and are more likely to drink excessively.”

“In many measures, residents of suburban areas are the best off. They generally rate their own health the highest and have the fewest premature deaths than either their urban or rural counterparts. Suburbanites also have the fewest low-birth-weight babies, homicides and sexually transmitted diseases.”

And according to this article, a third study reverses this and says that city dwellers are healthier because:

“No matter which country you are in, new research finds those who live in an urban neighborhood are twice as likely to be physically active the those in the suburbs.”

So which is it?

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: