Navigation Links
Scientists measure connection between the built environment and obesity in baby boomers
Date:8/11/2008

Does your neighborhood have a lot of fast food outlets, few sidewalks, and no parks? If yes, your physical neighborhood may be hampering your ability to be physically active and placing you at increased risk for obesity. According to a research study conducted in Portland, Oregon by scientists at Oregon Research Institute (ORI), neighborhoods with lower mixed-land use and higher densities of fast-food outlets were more likely to have residents who were overweight/obese. In contrast, residents living in neighborhoods with higher mixed-land use, high street connectivity, better access to public transportation, and more green and open spaces were more likely to engage in some form of neighborhood-based walking.

The study was unique in that it focused on the pre-Baby Boom/early-Baby Boom generations (ages 50-75) which will become the major demographic related to healthcare utilization in the next 20 years. By 2030, 36% of the total U. S. population (compared to 24.9% currently), will be over 50, and the numbers of those over 60 will more than double from current levels (ranging from an 82% increase in people aged 60-64 to a 126% increase in those aged 85+). Results from the study, funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, are reported in the July issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

"Findings from this study suggest the significant role that built environment plays in either positively or negatively impacting our health and/or lifestyle," notes study lead Fuzhong Li, Ph.D. "34% of U.S. adults aged 20 and over are obese. Part of the rise in this disease may be attributed to our surroundings -- for example, increased accessibility to unhealthy foods. The built environment is also creating barriers for our ability to exercise: many neighborhood areas lack parks and other recreational facilities and suburbs are often designed to discourage neighborhood walking. Simply focusing on encouraging people to change their lifestyles to eat better and to get more exercise -- is insufficient. Measures are also needed to improve features of the built environment, which are often modifiable (e.g., via changes in city zoning, development policies), to support people in making such changes." says Li.

ORI scientists studied the built environment characteristics (land-use mix, density of fast-food outlets, street connectivity, & public transit stations, and the presence of green & open spaces) of 120 neighborhoods in Portland, Oregon. Over 1200 residents of the neighborhoods provided the researchers information on their age, gender, education, race/ethnicity, household income, alcohol & tobacco use, general health status, Body Mass Index (BMI), and eating habits. The residents' levels of physical activity were also measured, including neighborhood walking, walking for transportation (to catch a bus), walking for household errands, and moderate or vigorous exercise. All participants were between the ages of 50 and 75.

The results showed significant associations among built-environment factors and the prevalence of overweight/obesity and various forms of physical activity in middle-aged and older adults. These findings suggest the need for public health and city planning officials to consider how modifiable neighborhood-level, built-environment characteristics can create more livable residential communities and promote active, healthy lifestyles.


'/>"/>

Contact: Kathryn Madden
kathryn@ori.org
Oregon Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Gladstone scientists identify single microRNA that controls blood vessel development
2. Scientists identify another piece of the weight-control puzzle
3. Scientists Create Mice Resistant to Obesity
4. Scientists Turn Skin Cells Into Motor Neurons in ALS Patients
5. Scientists race to stay ahead of the drug-taking and genetic manipulation that threatens sport
6. Scientists ID Jekyll-Hyde Protein in Lou Gehrigs Disease
7. Scientists identify how gastric reflux may trigger asthma
8. Embargoed Until Monday, July 21 at 5 p.m. EST; Scientists Figure Out How the Immune System and Brain Communicate to Control Disease
9. CSHL scientists correlate enzyme expression levels with chemotherapy drug response
10. Weizmann Institute scientists new technique gets to the root of cancer
11. NOAA and Louisiana scientists predict largest Gulf of Mexico dead zone on record
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/27/2017)... ... July 28, 2017 , ... ... upcoming episode of the award-winning television series, American Famer, scheduled to broadcast fourth ... , Syngenta is dedicated to helping humanity face its toughest challenge: how to ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... ... July 27, 2017 , ... MEDsys Software Solutions, the ... Care Organizations and Home Care Agencies, has been awarded CIO Applications Magazine’s Top ... solutions to over 1,000 agencies and multiple State Medicaid and Managed Care Programs. ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... ... July 27, 2017 , ... GAFFEY Healthcare, a leading provider ... Clinkscales to Vice President of Revenue Cycle Business Services and Suzanne Dusak to ... chief executive officer (CEO). , Elrene has been with company since Oct 2014 ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... ... 27, 2017 , ... Healthy eating isn’t always easy. Currently, more than 80 percent of Americans ... Americans overeat refined grains and sugar. This trend may help explain why the obesity rate ... are obese. , As a culture, we seem to have food on the brain more. ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... ... July 27, 2017 , ... ... compete to form startup companies around 117 breakthrough inventions from 55 institutions, including ... Institute, and National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering), the United States Army, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:7/11/2017)... of Echenberg Institute, is announcing a new safe and effective at-home VuVa ... other painful pelvic pain conditions such as pelvic floor dysfunction, vulvodynia, vulvar ... ... VuVa ... company, VuVatech LLC, fills a void in the women,s wellness market because ...
(Date:7/10/2017)... , July 10, 2017  US medical equipment ... in 2021, according to Medical Equipment & ... by Freedonia Focus Reports. Continued increases in demand for ... aging of the population and supported by gains in ... equipment and supplies. New product introductions will also drive ...
(Date:7/10/2017)... S.C. , July 10, 2017  BDI ... purchasing and patient support services organization serving specialty ... today the launch of four significant, value-added member ... market insights, better manage reimbursement and improve access ... and factor therapies. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: