STUDY: Living Close to Green Spaces May Help You Live Longer

Living close to green spaces may help you live healthier and longer, according to a recent study from researchers in Canada. It can reduce the risk of several common causes of death, including severe cardiovascular and respiratory diseases.

Reducing Your Risk for Deadly Diseases

The study involved looking at the data from 1.3 million people in Canada. It revealed that residing close to trees, vegetation, and other green spaces could lower people’s risk of contracting deadly diseases by about 10 percent. Trees and vegetation, after all, can reduce the level of air pollution in a community. Plants also have some cooling effect in big cities. A neighborhood with a lot of green, open spaces encourages people to have an active lifestyle.

Other than the above physical health gains, living near greenery can lower your stress level. Even if you don’t go out to walk or run, having a daily view of nature helps you feel more relaxed and less anxious. Researchers say that reduced stress can help improve the mood, boost immune functions, and promote longevity.

Longer Living with Greenery

The findings support the development of policies and other initiatives related to creating greener and healthier communities, not only in Canada but other countries, as well. In the Philippines, for instance, more real estate developers include green and open spaces in their community plans. Several condominiums in the city now have mini parks and other green areas.

Housing developments near the capital also put in their efforts to make their neighborhoods greener than before. An in-depth review on Lancaster in Cavite, for instance, shows that an urbanized residential community can still have lush trees and bushes on its landscape, as well as other “green” amenities.

The Canadian study suggests that greenness in a community doesn’t have to be concentrated. Trees and bushes that line the roads and public areas of a neighborhood can, in fact, make a huge difference to the residents’ overall health.