28 September 2004

--- A Direct Health Connection, Finally!

Here is one post which the Sassy Lawyer, BatJay, Master XP and most of you might find interesting. According to the Washington Post:
"People who live in sprawling communities tend to suffer more health problems, according to the first study to document a link between the world of strip malls, cul-de-sacs and subdivisions and a broad array of ailments.

The study, which analyzed data on more than 8,600 Americans in 38 metropolitan areas --- including the Washington region --- found that rates of arthritis, asthma, headaches and other complaints increased with the degree of sprawl. Living in areas with the least amount of sprawl, compared with living in areas with the most, was like adding about four years to people's lives in terms of their health, the study found.

As suburbia has spread across the American landscape, health experts have become increasingly concerned that the fastfood, car-dependent lifestyle may be contributing to a host of health problems. Previous studies have linked sprawl to an increased risk of being overweight and obese and certain related health problems, such as high blood pressure. The new study, published in the journal Public Health, is the first to directly examine the relationship between sprawl and a wide spectrum of chronic illnesses.
We have long suspected this.

Now, finally, we have confirmation.

I need not look far for real-life examples. Most of my classmates' relatives (from the province or 'promdi', if that term still exists today) who went with them here in the metropolis, are either sick today and bedridden or worse, are already long gone.

I strongly suspect it has something to do with physical activity and the quality of air here in the city.

Deborah Cohen, one of the researchers of the study said:
"To improve our health, the study suggests that we should build cities where people feel comfortable walking and are not so dependent on cars."
These fast few weeks, I have been taking loooong walks I wasn't doing before. You can call it my vain attempt to be healthy in an unhealthy environment.

Unless we do something today, I know that it will always be certain that the country mouse will outlive the city mouse in the days to come.

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