Health and mortality

Living Near Greener Spaces is Associated with Lower Risk of Diabetes-Related Mortality

Living Near Greener Spaces is Associated with Lower Risk of Diabetes-Related Mortality in Brussels, Belgium: a 13-Year Mortality Follow-up Study

Lucía Rodriguez Loureiro

Lidia Casas Ruiz
Mariska Bauwelinck
Charlotte Noël
Christophe Vanroelen
Sylvie Gadeyne

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Within the frame of the Green&Quiet project, we have investigated the associations between residential surrounding greenness and diabetes-related mortality in the Brussels agglomeration. The preliminary results were presented in the 32nd Annual Conference of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE 2020), held online between the 24/08/2020 and the 27/08/2020.
The findings of this cohort study, with a long follow-up period of 13.25 years, show that living near greener areas in Brussels is associated with a lower risk of dying from diabetes among residents aged between 40 and 80 years old. These results are robust after controlling for sociodemographic and socioeconomic factors. Furthermore, we found that this beneficial association might be stronger in more deprived neighbourhoods and in women.
Diabetes is one of the first causes of death in the world, together with cardiovascular disease and cancer. Despite its severity, the prevalence of diabetes in the Belgian population is currently underreported. In Brussels, diabetes disease presents a socioeconomic gradient, with the most disadvantaged populations being the most affected. The results of our study are relevant because they suggest that our immediate built environment, and concretely greener spaces, might help reducing the burden of diabetes in the Brussels’ population, especially among the higher risk groups.”