Obesity And The Built Environment

Medscape presents a conference report on how planners and medical practitioners work together to improve public health through community design.

"What event could bring together physicians, urban planners, dietitians, meteorologists, architects, social activists, policy planners, and politicians? The answer is a conference, "Obesity and the Built Environment," which was organized by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to investigate how our built environment promotes a sedentary lifestyle and obesity...

Dr. Drewnowski presented an analysis of the availability of fast food and fresh food in Seattle, Washington, by neighborhood income level, which revealed that lower-income areas have disproportionately high numbers of fast food outlets and disproportionately low numbers of grocery stores selling fresh foods.

...Lawrence D. Frank, PhD,[7] University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, presented data from the first study to assess the effect that the urban form has on travel patterns, body mass index, and obesity status. Objective measures of land use mix, residential density, and street connectivity were developed to characterize a 1-kilometer "network distance" surrounding study participants' homes."

Thanks to Congress on New Urbanism

Full Story: Highlights of Obesity and the Built Environment: Improving Public Health Through Community Design

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