Environments influence Health and Lifestyle Behaviour

Human biology, health and lifestyle behaviour are strongly influenced by the environment. The principles of health-promoting community design are well described1-6. This approach focuses on wellness factors which intrinsically address the multiple lifestyle factors, such as increasing social connection and sense of community, which may help alleviate crime and psychosocial stress, improving access to healthy food and opportunities for physical activity to prevent obesity.

An example is ‘choice architecture’ 7, where healthy foods are placed at eye level in a school cafeteria, while less healthy junk food are positioned in harder places to reach. As a result, children are ‘nudged’ to select the healthier foods, without completely removing their freedom of choice. 





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