Urban Fold

The Health Risks of Suburbia

Suburban and sprawling neighborhoods have been connected with disease and obesity in a new report.

"A recent study, Neighbourhood Environments, and Resources for Healthy Living: a Focus on Diabetes in Toronto, by Ontario's Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences and St. Michael's Hospital, points up a link between diabetes and neighbourhoods where opportunities for physical activity are limited."

"'Your neighbourhood may be making you sick,' says Dr, Gillian Booth, co-lead author of the study and an endocrinologist with St. Michael's. She notes that one in two Canadians is now overweight, a factor in diabetes and other diseases, including heart disease."

"'Regularly walking briskly five times a week is a great health benefit,' she says. 'Living in an activity-friendly neighbourhood, one where you can walk to different activities is now shown to be an advantage in avoiding disease. In some of the suburbs, there are no sidewalks, let alone any grocery stores or community centres or schools within walking distance. Often, access to public transportation is limited too.'"

Full Story: Are the suburbs a health hazard?

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