Creating Green Neighborhoods Leads to Better Health
Whether you are an environmentalist, or simply enjoy walking outside amongst the trees, you probably already know being outdoors makes you feel better. But did you know it is not just a feeling – it is science: green space and tree coverage have a proven and positive association with physical health.
Green Spaces leads to better mental health and well-being.
Green spaces and trees provide mental health benefits, as the natural environment has a distinctive capability to restore mental well-being. Simply being by nature can reduce blood-pressure and calm your mind. Proximity to green space has been associated with lower rates of anxiety disorders and depression clusters in neighborhoods.
More Trees and Healthier Kids
If lower anxiety levels are not enough, maternal health and infant birth weight have been researched in a number of urban areas, with each study concluding that the closer a mother lives in proximity to trees and tree coverage, the rate of undersized newborns decreases. Proximity to parks and recreation is associated with increased physical activity in children as well. Children who live in neighborhoods with more greenness were less likely to have higher body mass index (BMI) scores than children living in less green neighborhoods and kids living near green space are less likely to have asthma.
Take a Walk in Nature
Conserving our planet it not just for “green” people, it is for anyone who wants improved community health and well-being. Taking a step outside amongst nature is especially important as the world faces a pandemic. If your city allows it, go outside and look at the plants and trees around you (you can touch them too!), and then take a deep breath and let nature help restore your well-being.
Want more information on trees and their health benefits? If you are looking for something to read as an alternative to binge watching, these articles discuss green space and health in detail.
Kaczynski, A. T., & Henderson, K. A. (2007). Environmental Correlates of Physical Activity: A Review of Evidence about Parks and Recreation. Leisure Sciences An Interdisciplinary Journal, 29(4), 315-354.