For decades, the assumption has been that living in a city is a detriment to your health. Why would you choose to live in a noisy, crowded, urban environment when you could live in the country or in the suburbs? While the suburbia life may seem attractive to some, it may not be as good as you’ve been led to believe.
A recent study by the University of Oxford and the University of Hong Kong found that obesity rates are actually lower where population density is higher, i.e. cities. Also, city folk tend to socialize more often than their suburban counterparts, which is part of an overall healthy lifestyle. The higher levels of socializing in cities can also have significant mental health benefits.
City dwellers typically walk more due to the compactness of cities. Most of your destinations are in walking distance in a city, something that can’t be said of a suburb or rural area. This results in higher obesity levels outside of cities where urban sprawl forces people to drive everywhere.
Overall, this study concludes that living in urban areas isn’t as harmful as the consensus seems to believe. There are countless reasons why the human race has chosen to live so close to one another throughout history, even as technology has made it possible to live very far apart. For more details on the links between city living and better health, physical and mental, check out the accompanying infographic!