The Differences by Sex and Gender in the Relationship Between Urban Greenness and Cardiometabolic Health: A Systematic Review

Marta Beatriz Fernández Núñez, Lia Campos Suzman, Roser Maneja, Albert Bach, Oriol Marquet, Isabelle Anguelovski, Pablo Knobel*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

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In an increasingly urbanized world, where cardiometabolic issues in cities have raised public health concerns, urban greenness is known to be beneficial for some of the most common health issues. However, the examination of the contribution of sex and gender regarding the benefits of urban greenness for people’s cardiometabolic health is lacking. For that reason, we conducted a systematic review of previous literature on the topic following the PRISMA methodology. Additionally, we assessed the quality of the included articles, which we found satisfactory as most papers were of very good or good quality. We explored the relationship between urban greenness exposure and cardiovascular risk factors, cardiovascular diseases, and mortality from cardiovascular diseases. Results suggest that urban greenness is protective against cardiovascular risk factors, diseases, and mortality. When stratifying results by sex and gender, findings point to urban greenness being more beneficial for women and females in stroke and cardiovascular risk factors, except for hypertension and lipid accumulation product. On the other hand, males were more protected by urban greenness in terms of cardiovascular diseases and CVD-related mortality, thus proving that sex and gender health inequalities exist. Furthermore, looking towards the future, research needs to use the proper terminology for sex and gender and policy makers should design urban greenness with a gender perspective.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1054-1067
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Urban Health
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Cardiovascular risk factors
  • Gender differences
  • Obesity
  • Sex differences
  • Urban greenness


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