The density of greenness near residences is associated with lower urinary levels of epinephrine and F2-isoprostane, according to a study published in the Dec. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Heart Association.
Ray Yeager, Ph.D., from the University of Louisville in Kentucky, and colleagues conducted a cross-sectional study involving 408 individuals recruited from a preventive cardiology clinic. The authors sought to examine the correlation between residential greenness and cardiovascular disease. Biomarkers of cardiovascular injury and risk were measured in participants' blood and urine. Greenness was estimated from the satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) in zones with radiuses of 250 m and 1 km surrounding participants' residences.
The researchers observed an inverse correlation for contemporaneous NDVI within 250 m of a participant's residence and urinary levels of epinephrine (−6.9 percent) and F2-isoprostane (−9.0 percent). Women, those not on β-blockers, and those who had not previously experienced a myocardial infarction had stronger correlations between NDVI and urinary epinephrine. Eleven of the 15 subtypes of circulating angiogenic cells examined were inversely associated and two were positively associated with contemporaneous NDVI.
"Increasing the amount of vegetation in a neighborhood may be an unrecognized environmental influence on cardiovascular health and a potentially significant public health intervention," a coauthor said in a statement.