Relationship between urban sprawl and physical activity, obesity, and morbidity - Update and refinement

Reid Ewing, Gail Meakins, Shima Hamidi, Arthur C. Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

120 Scopus citations

Abstract

Aims: This study aims to model multiple health outcomes and behaviors in terms of the updated, refined, and validated county compactness/sprawl measures. Methods: Multiple health outcomes and behaviors are modeled using multi-level analysis. Results: After controlling for observed confounding influences, both original and new compactness measures are negatively related to BMI, obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Indices are not significantly related to physical activity, perhaps because physical activity is not defined broadly to include active travel to work, shopping, and other destinations. Conclusions: Developing urban and suburban areas in a more compact manner may have some salutary effect on obesity and chronic disease trends.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)118-126
Number of pages9
JournalHealth and Place
Volume26
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Built environment
  • Compactness
  • Obesity
  • Physical activity
  • Sprawl

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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