Contribution of biodiversity and green spaces to mental and physical fitness, and cultural dimensions of health
Pierre Horwitz, Edith Cowan UniversityFollow
Aaron Jenkins, Edith Cowan UniversityFollow
Abdul Rahim bin Abdul Hamid
Lai Choo Malone-Lee
Raul A. Montenegro
Jenny J. Roe
World Health Organization
Place of Publication
Romanelli, C., Cooper, D., Campbell-Lendrum, D., Maiero, M., Karesh, W.B., Hunter, D., & Golen, C.D.
School of Science
Examining the interlinkages between biodiversity, mental health and health in all its dimensions as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) (“a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”) demands that we explore the interrelationships among biological and cultural diversity, and between physical and mental health, to foreground integrative and interdisciplinary approaches and research that draws from different disciplines, and that we are able to accommodate diverse perspectives. Integrative approaches that explicitly engage with biodiversity, physical and mental health, along with cultural and ecosystem dynamics, continue to emerge in fields such as ecosystem approaches to health, Ecohealth and One Health, with a growing focus on interrelationships among the health of humans, animals and other species in the context of social–ecological systems (see, for example, Charron 2012; Waltner-Toews 2004; Webb et al. 2010; Wilcox et al. 2012). At the same time, scientific and clinical studies drawing from other fields such as immunology can contribute invaluable insights into these multifaceted dimensions. The connections between biodiversity, mental health and physical activity are particularly relevant in the context of a shifting global burden of disease, in which noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are the most rapidly rising challenge to global public health.