The Relationship Between Human Health and the Built Environment

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  1. Task 1

Built environment is directly associated with health of people living, working and playing in them and has different impact on different age groups, thus plays critical part in human health. Increasing cost of health, cases of diabetes, obesity and other diseases, lack of exercise due to transport vehicles domination, easy fast food and limited social gatherings due to technological advancements adds to health problems in Australia. New South Wales (NSW) department of health has proposed a health built environment program (HBEP), which focuses on redesigning and developing built environment to improve overall health using best in class practices and policies. Evidence gathered by NSW department of health identified lack of physical activity, low quality food and improper communication between communities as the leading reasons behind health problems. Paper focuses on how can these risks be lowered by modifying the built environment.

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HBEP program focuses on how built environment can be improved to improve health. Discussion on benefits of increased physical activity on health were made along with the evidence on how built environment modification can motivate people to increase physical activity. Evidence has been provided on how political, economic, social and policies related to build environment can influence physical activity positively. Critical analysis on how high residential density area in built environment of society, distance to street markets, maintained footpaths, along with small design elements modification can increase level of physical activity.

A developing pattern in the configuration, urban arranging, and restorative callings is one that explores how build environment helps the wellbeing issues of Australia. This perspective is focused around the thought that deficient eating methodology and stationary living builds the danger for some illnesses, for example, cardiovascular sickness, hypertension, colon malignancy, sort 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, stoutness, nervousness and depression. An accord now exists among wellbeing researchers, therapeutic professionals and different experts that a dynamic lifestyle lessens the danger for some ceaseless infections and/or encourages the effective administration of those sicknesses. Inside this setting, the dynamic living development emerged a couple of years prior to strike the stationary society issue. It focused on the improvement of a lifestyle that incorporates physical action into day by day schedules, with the objective of aggregating negligibly 30 minutes of movement every day by strolling, bicycling, working out, working in the yard, taking the stairs, or participating in some other kind of physical action.

Further perception of people towards physical activity in built environment was discussed and how this can be molded in support of physical activity using built environment renovation policies was analyzed. HBEP program also considers built environment modification for school and college infrastructures also in order to make the new generation habitual with the importance of health as early as school. Overall research on social ecological model is done considering the impact of policies related to society, politics, built environment and economical on physical activity. Further a detailed research on the impact of built environment on community strengthening was conducted and weaknesses were found related to poor self residential decision making and negligence of health variables in built environment which were then included in HBEP policy program. Gap analysis between built environment impact on social connection amongst people and community empowerment was analyzed. HBEP policy considers bridging this gap through improved communication between built environment department and health department of Australia.

Paper also reviews literatures the impact of advertising of fast foods on their consumption and how it leads to increases cases of diseases. It was found that there is no proper consideration of relationship between advertising of bad food and problems arising due to consumption of that food. Evidence were found by NSW department of health that built environment of schools also had no provision of controlling advertising of fast foods around school campuses. It was found that built environment policy did not had any methodology to consider the impact of poor food availability on the health. HBEP proposes a qualitative and quantitative study to understand the relationship with food in built environment of schools and even residencies and promote good food within the environment. Exploration is needed on all parts of the based environment's effect on sound nourishment introduction in Australia. While various huge scale studies have been attempted surveying accessibility of less than great sustenance, their results need to be further investigated through complex quantitative and qualitative analysis. Advancement of an assortment of socially touchy exploration embraced in diverse urban cities and towns will permit more dependable generalizations to underpin approach. Further paper proposes that creating a healthy built environment must be taken care of critically through better communication and understanding, quality leadership and relationship building.

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This paper unites a proof base of existing examination to advise solid nature's turf approaches and movements. It likewise helps to the identification of regions of exploration in which built environment policy lacks. The Survey's key message is that there is a solid relationship between individuals' wellbeing and built environment and this relationship is very complex. This paper talks about the tasks, which need to considered in built environment policy of Australia so that healthy environments can be built and problems can be lowered.

  1. Social interaction are determinants of good health

This statement was mentioned on page 75 of paper and was raised in order to improve the social interactions amongst community people so that built environment can be socially healthy. I completely agree with this statement in the context of the paper and otherwise. Social interactions improves information flow between people, which can be beneficial for the society as matters like poor food around the built environment, cleanliness of workplace, residential society and other places which can affect health. It will also further improve the overall quality of physical and social environment in communities hence strengthening the good health. Majority of people who will benefit from social interaction are old age people who not so often get chances to socialize. According to a report done by University of Rochester medical center, people who often socialize more than other does, live more and happy (University of Rochester, 2014). Apart from that, there are many health advantages of social interaction, which are discussed below to further support the statement: -

  • Often people who socially interact have low blood pressure levels than people who do not interact often.
  • Low risk of Alzheimer’s
  • Can help one overcome loneliness and depression.
  • Less or no risk of cancer and cardiovascular related problems.

Everybody needs to feel adored and upheld particularly as we develop more seasoned. As we age, companions really might be lifelines. Social interaction, offering, being in contact with other people who have dynamic, included lives gives living a reason. Offering to companions aides duplicate the delights and separation the distresses. Vast, augmented families that were regularly accessible for backing are currently less. The amount of one-man family units has expanded. Individuals regularly move a long way from their families to work or resign. In any case staying associated with family, companions and exercises has never been more vital. A few studies report fewer colds, lower circulatory strain and lower heart rates in members with solid social ties. Detail indicates that marriage, maybe the strongest tie, adds years to future. Furthermore, suicide, emotional instability and liquor abuse rates are much lower when individuals interact socially on a higher level (Gold, 1999).

Another study from the US recommends that social collaboration ought to be viewed as an essential element for growing lifespan, on a standard with other wellbeing and lifestyle components, to the degree that low social connection hurts life span to the extent that liquor addiction and smoking, has more effect than absence of activity, and is twice as destructive as obesity (Louv, 2012).

Analysts at Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah, directed a meta-examination of distributed studies and found that having social ties with companions, family, neighbors and associates can enhance our chances of survival by 50 for every penny. You can read about their study online in a paper distributed in the July issue of PLOS Medicine.

References: -

  1. Louv R., 2012, Health benefits to children from contact with the outdoors and nature, [Online], Available from: - http://www.childrenandnature.org/downloads/CNNHealthBenefits2012.pdf [Accessed on 13th June, 2014]
  2. University of Rochester, 2014, Older adults and importance of social interaction, [Online], Available from: - http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentTypeID=1&ContentID=4513 [Accessed on 13th June, 2014]
  3. Gold E., 1999, Benefits of social interaction, [Online], Available from: - http://www.valueoptions.com/april06_newsletter/benefits_of_social_interactions.htm [Accessed on 13th June,2014]
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