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Am J Epidemiol. 2013 Oct 1;178(7):1094-105. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwt111. Epub 2013 Aug 13.

Understanding the independent and joint associations of the home and workplace built environments on cardiorespiratory fitness and body mass index.


This observational study examined the associations of built environment features around the home and workplace with cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) based on a treadmill test and body mass index (BMI) (weight (kg)/height (m)(2)). The study included 8,857 adults aged 20-88 years who completed a preventive medical examination in 2000-2007 while living in 12 Texas counties. Analyses examining workplace neighborhood characteristics included a subset of 4,734 participants. Built environment variables were derived around addresses by using geographic information systems. Models were adjusted for individual-level and census block group-level demographics and socioeconomic status, smoking, BMI (in CRF models), and all other home or workplace built environment variables. CRF was associated with higher intersection density, higher number of private exercise facilities around the home and workplace, larger area of vegetation around the home, and shorter distance to the closest city center. Aside from vegetation, these same built environment features around the home were also associated with BMI. Participants who lived and worked in neighborhoods in the lowest tertiles for intersection density and the number of private exercise facilities had lower CRF and higher BMI values than participants who lived and worked in higher tertiles for these variables. This study contributes new evidence to suggest that built environment features around homes and workplaces may affect health.


environment design; exercise; geographic information systems; obesity; physical fitness; workplace

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