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Neighborhood deprivation and biomarkers of health in Britain: The mediating role of the physical environment

Chaparro, MP and Benzeval, M and Richardson, E and Mitchell, R (2018) 'Neighborhood deprivation and biomarkers of health in Britain: The mediating role of the physical environment.' BMC Public Health, 18. ISSN 1471-2458

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Abstract

Background: Neighborhood deprivation has been consistently linked to poor individual health outcomes; however, studies exploring the mechanisms involved in this association are scarce. The objective of this study was to investigate whether objective measures of the physical environment mediate the association between neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation and biomarkers of health in Britain. Methods: We linked individual-level biomarker data from Understanding Society: The UK Household Longitudinal Survey (2010-2012) to neighborhood-level data from different governmental sources. Our outcome variables were forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1%; n=16,347), systolic blood pressure (SBP; n=16,846), body mass index (BMI; n=19,417), and levels of C-reactive protein (CRP; n=11,825). Our measure of neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation was the Carstairs index, and the neighborhood-level mediators were levels of air pollutants (sulphur dioxide [SO2], particulate matter [PM10], nitrogen dioxide [NO2], and carbon monoxide [CO]), green space, and proximity to waste and industrial facilities. We fitted a multilevel mediation model following a multilevel structural equation framework in MPlus v7.4, adjusting for age, gender, and income. Results: Residents of poor neighborhoods and those exposed to higher pollution and less green space had worse health outcomes. However, only SO2exposure significantly and partially mediated the association between neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation and SBP, BMI, and CRP. Conclusion: Reducing air pollution exposure and increasing access to green space may improve population health but may not decrease health inequalities in Britain.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Socioeconomic deprivation, Biomarkers, Physical environment, Mediation analysis, Britain
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Institute for Social and Economic Research
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2018 09:37
Last Modified: 09 Aug 2018 14:13
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/22644

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