Green space and health in mainland china: A systematic review
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Non‐communicable diseases (NCDs) have become a major cause of premature mortality and disabilities in China due to factors concomitant with rapid economic growth and urbanisation over three decades. Promoting green space might be a valuable strategy to help improve population health in China, as well as a range of co‐benefits (e.g., increasing resilience to climate change). No systematic review has so far determined the degree of association between green space and health outcomes in China. This review was conducted to address this gap. Five electronic databases were searched using search terms on green space, health, and China. The review of 83 publications that met eligibility criteria reports associations indicative of various health benefits from more green space, including mental health, general health, healthier weight status and anthropometry, and more favorable cardiometabolic and cerebrovascular outcomes. There was insufficient evidence to draw firm conclusions on mortality, birth outcomes, and cognitive function, and findings on respiratory and infectious outcomes were inconsistent and limited. Future work needs to examine the health benefits of particular types and qualities of green spaces, as well as to take advantage of (quasi‐)experimental designs to test greening interventions within the context of China’s rapid urbanization and economic growth.
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National Health and Medical Research Council