News from ISGlobal
Adults who had close contact with natural spaces during their childhood could have a better mental health than those who had less contact, according to a new study by the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), an institution supported by ”la Caixa”, involving four European cities.
This study, published in the International Journal of Environment Research and Public Health, was performed within the framework of the PHENOTYPE project with data from almost 3,600 adults from Barcelona (Spain), Doetinchem (Netherlands), Kaunas (Lithuania) and Stoke-on-Trent (United Kingdom).
The results show that adults who were less exposed to natural spaces during their childhood had lower scores in mental health tests, compared to those with higher exposure. Myriam Preuss, first author of the study, explains that “in general, participants with lower childhood exposure to nature gave a lower importance to natural environments”. No association was found between childhood exposure and vitality, or the use of or satisfaction with these spaces in adulthood.
Wilma Zijlema, ISGlobal researcher and study coordinator, underlines that the conclusions “show the importance of childhood exposure to natural spaces for the development of a nature-appreciating attitude and a healthy psychological state in adulthood”.
Montazeri P, Thomsen C, Casas M, de Bont J, Haug LS, Maitre L, Papadopoulou E, Sakhi AK, Slama R, Saulnier PJ, Urquiza J, Grazuleviciene R, Andrusaityte S, McEachan R, Wright J, Chatzi L, Basagana X, Vrijheid M. Socioeconomic position and exposure to multiple environmental chemical contaminants in six European mother-child cohorts. Int J Hyg Envir Heal 2019; doi: 10.1016/j.ijheh.2019.04.002