Design can encourage healthy eating—the neuroscience of how is discussed in this article—providing this information at this time of year seems like a public service.
Promote Physical Health/Improve Health Outcomes
Positive spaces for all
Sunder shares thought-provoking insights that will be valuable to any one designing patient rooms, particularly semi-private ones. As sales materials on the book’s Amazon site report, “The patient room is the smallest cell of the hospital organism. Its layout determines the structure of the ward and is therefore a decisive factor for the entire building. Many requirements have to be met. The patient's sense of well-being can be positively influenced by the design: homely materials, an attractive view and sufficient privacy are important objectives.
Engelen, Rahmann, and de Jong reviewed published studies to learn more about how design influences Quality of Life (QoL) of older individuals. They report that their work “takes a cross-disciplinary approach to understand the current evidence of the relationship between design, healthy ageing and QoL. . . . The extracted literature suggests there is good evidence for the role of biophilia, and indoor environmental quality; emerging evidence for technology, wayfinding, and opportunities for social interactions; but limited evidence for safety/security and adaptability/fit.
Munzel and colleagues continue the research into links between environmental conditions and disease. They report that “Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are fatal for more than 38 million people each year and are thus the main contributors to the global burden of disease accounting for 70% of mortality. The majority of these deaths are caused by cardiovascular disease.
Being active indoors is as good for our minds as it is for our waistlines. It can help us think more clearly, creatively, and productively, for example, all while we burn calories. Neuroscientists have determined how design can spur people to be physically active inside.
Learning from pandemic experiences
Baobeid and teammates built on earlier research to investigate what makes an area walkable. They share that “This review advocates that long-term health benefits from walking and physical activity are the premier incentive to repurpose our cities to be more sustainable and more walking friendly, and spark behavioral change into reducing car dependency for all daily transportations. . . .
The health-related, behavioral, and cognitive implications of having and using sit-stand desks have been carefully and thoroughly investigated by neuroscientists.
Researchers have linked living in greener neighborhoods to better cardiovascular health. Atiken determined that “People who live in green neighbourhoods are less likely to develop cardiovascular disease. . . . The researchers analysed the odds of developing any new cardiovascular disease, and the number of new cardiovascular conditions, based on block-level greenness.