Living longer, and healthier, might come down to where you live and your access to nature, a new study says.
Researchers from Harvard’s School of Public Health and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, in Boston, studied more than 108,000 women involved in the Nurse’s Health Study – a nationwide investigation into risk factors for major chronic diseases in women – from 2000 to 2008.
What they found was a major boost for those living in green areas – women living in the greenest areas had a 12 per cent lower death rate than women living in the least green areas.
They determined the level of greenery in a certain area by using satellite imagery from different seasons and years.
“We were surprised to see that there was a 12 percent lower rate of mortality,” Peter James, study author and research associate at the Harvard Chan School’s Department of Epidemiology told CNN. “We know already that vegetation can help mitigate the effect of climate change. Our study suggests the potential co-benefit for health.”
It is believed the findings would be similar if men were involved in the study.