Fast Company's Charlie Sorrel takes a look at a new global study which found that well-designed neighborhoods where walking is an effective mode of transportation not only keep their residents fit, but can reduce obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
The study, which was recently published in the Lancet, looks at 14 similarly-designed cities in different countries to determine whether the layouts were the primary factor of increased health. To accomplish this, Fitbit-style accelerometers measured the physical activity of 14,222 adult participants for four to seven days.
"People who live in walkable neighborhoods that are densely populated, have interconnected streets, and are close to shops, services, restaurants, public transport, and parks tend to be more physically active than residents of less walkable areas," says the study. The city where people walked the most per day was Wellington, New Zealand, at 50 minutes. The lowest was Baltimore, at a mere 29 minutes.