Research Briefs

The Nature and Health Alliance (NHA) understands the significance of disseminating research insights to professionals, both within academia and beyond, engaged in the realm of nature and health. To enhance accessibility and practical application, NHA researchers and select contributors have collaboratively written research briefs that  summarize specific topics or distill meta-analyses for public consumption. In alignment with our commitment to excellence, NHA plans to publish 12 research briefs annually. These briefs will undergo peer review conducted by NHA's esteemed research committee and be authored by recognized, seasoned researchers in the field. Please click on the briefs below to download a pdf version of the file.

List Display

Research Brief

Living in Walkable Neighborhoods Improves Cardiovascular Health

Urban design that is supportive to walking is becoming an important and proven determinant of health, especially cardiovascular health. This study examined the link between walkability and cardiovascular risk factors by studying close to one million patients in an urban setting.

Research Brief

The Bayou Greenway Study: Living close to Urban Green Space improves your Health

The purpose of this study was to examine the health benefits of the Bayou Greenway trail system in Houston by tracking patterns and changes in hospital visits.

Research Brief

Measuring Attitudes Toward Spending Time in Nature: A Validated Measurement Tool

Spending time in nature is proven to be good for your health. Interventions based on health behavior theories may be effective at increasing time spent in nature only if we have a better understanding of attitudes towards this behavior.

Research Brief

Exposure to Nature Improves Quality of Life for Cancer Patients

This study was focused on testing the effect of nature exposure on chemotherapy patients during their treatment session in a comprehensive cancer infusion center. The study observed 33 participants with various cancers in three rooms in random order at different cycles to receive chemotherapy: control room, green therapy room, virtual reality (VR) nature room.

Research Brief

Validating Nature Images to be used in Nature and Health Research using fMRI Technology

This study fills a void in the literature by both validating images of nature for use in future research experiments and examining which characteristics of these images are most representative of nature. Understanding semantic categories most representative of nature is useful in developing nature-centered interventions and research that uses neuroimaging modalities, such as fMRI studies.

Research Brief

How City Trees Support Human Health

The environmental services and benefits of urban trees are diverse and well recognized. What is less recognized is the relationship between urban trees and human health.

Research Brief

Air Pollution is Linked To More Hospital Days & Higher Cost of Care

Hospital length of stay (LOS) is often used as a proxy for healthcare cost in the United States. This study investigates the association between outdoor air pollution and LOS among pediatric asthma patients. Air pollution data was collected from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Data on hospitalizations and air pollution were analyzed and show that air pollution was significantly associated with prolonged LOS.