Health and Wellness

Evaluation of indoor air quality in high-rise residential buildings in Bangkok and factor analysis

By RISC | 3 months ago

  High-rise residential developments are rapidly increasing in urban areas. Smaller residential units in this high rise bring a reduction in windows, resulting in poor indoor air ventilation. In addition, materials used in interiors can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can significantly affect human health. Since people spend 90% of their time indoors, an evaluation of indoor air quality is especially important for high-rise residential buildings with an analysis of determining factors. This study aims to measure the concentrations of VOCs, formaldehyde, and particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10) in 9 high-rise residential buildings in Bangkok by using the accidental sampling method (n = 252) and to investigate possible important determining factors. The results show that the average concentrations of VOCs, formaldehyde, PM2.5, and PM10 in 9 high-rise residential buildings were at good to moderate levels in the indoor air quality index (IAQI) and that high pollutant concentrations were rarely found except in new constructions. Moreover, it was found that the age of buildings shows strong correlations with all pollutants (p value < 0.0001). Old buildings showed significantly lower pollutant concentrations than new and under-construction buildings at a 95% confidence level. The findings from this investigation can be used as part of sustainable well-being design guidelines for future high-rise residential developments.   Read more or purchase the full version at

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Air pollution: The overlooked disaster

By RISC | 5 months ago

Are we overlooking something?​In winter, along with cooler temperatures come particulates, which affect our health. The ground becomes cooler than the atmosphere above, trapping particles inside an "inversion layer".​Air pollution is a leading global problem we cannot ignore. More than 7 million people die each year from air pollution, making it one of the 8 top causes of death worldwide. In Thailand, the main particulate issue we face is PM2.5. These tiny particles cause over 22,000 premature deaths, according to Greenpeace research, with a huge impact on health and the economy. Bangkok was the most affected city last year, followed by Chiang Mai.​The Pollution Control Department lists the sources of Bangkok’s particulates this year as:​- 72.5% from traffic (especially 144,630 trucks and 99,652 diesel vehicles)​- 17% from industry- 5% from agriculture and field burning​- 5.5% from other sources​Reducing pollution requires action on vehicles, industry, and field burning. Thailand also has initiatives to tackle particulates such as...​- Increasing the potential of area-based management (emergency and crisis solutions)​- Pollution reduction and prevention from sources (2019-21 and 2022-24 plans)​- Increasing the potential of pollution management (2019-21 and 2022-24 plans)​In the next post, we’ll look at how different countries are tackling their air pollution.​Information: WHO, Pollution Control Department, Greenpeace, NGThai ​Author/Editor: Phetcharin Phongphetkul, Sustainable Designer, RISC​

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Cognitive decline happens to all of us – but how fast depends on stress.

By RISC | 5 months ago

  When you are stressed, your hypothalamus alerts the pituitary gland and the adrenal cortex, which releases glucocorticoid. This stress hormone then affects your memory and concentration. The areas it impacts include the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and amygdala, which processes external stimuli and memories linked to emotions. Our ability to form long-term memories therefore deteriorates.So how can we manage stress to protect our brains?Regular mindful meditation can slow down brain decline, boost memory areas, and help control emotions including pain, according to scientific research.Exercise can also protect your brain. When our muscles move, growth factor is released to the brain, helping regenerate neurons, dilate blood vessels, and keep the brain active.Neurotechnology can also help. A brain computer interface (BCI) can check your brain stress and help you alter your behavior. You can also train your brain with cognitive games or stimulate it with weak electrical and magnetic waves.Want to know more about slowing down brain deterioration? Take a look at “RISC Talk Vol.2 / 2020: The Secrets of Body and Brain for Silver Age Residential Development". Discover from Dr. Sirawaj Itthipuripat, a neuroscientist at the Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) Lab at King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi, how to protect your brain at #CognitiveDecline #Stress #MindfulnessMeditation #BCI #RISCwellbeing #Sustainability #Innovation #Research

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Which kind of room is suitable for elderly?

By RISC | 6 months ago

  อย่างที่รู้กัน...พอคนเราอายุมากขึ้นเข้าสู่วัยชรา สภาพร่างกายและฮอร์โมนต่างๆ ในร่างกายจะมีการเปลี่ยนแปลงไป ทั้งการเคลื่อนไหวที่ไม่คล่องแคล่วเหมือนก่อน การรับฟังที่แย่ลง สายตาไม่มองไม่ชัด รวมทั้งอารมณ์และฮอร์โมนเสื่อมลง ส่งผลให้ห้องต่างๆ ที่ผู้สูงอายุใช้เป็นประจำอาจจะต้องปรับให้เหมาะสมตามไปด้วยครับ อย่างเช่น... ​พื้นที่ในส่วนที่ทำกิจกรรมในครอบครัว หรือห้องนั่งเล่น ควรใช้สีโทนอ่อน เปิดให้ได้รับช่วงคลื่นแสงสีขาว (Blue Wave) ช่วง 447-484 nm ซึ่งเป็นแสงจากธรรมชาติเข้ามา เพราะจะช่วยกระตุ้นการรับจอประสาทตาที่เชื่อมต่อกับนาฬิกาชีวภาพ (Circadian Rhythm) กระตุ้นการผลิตสารเคมีของสมอง รักษาความผิดปกติทางอารมณ์ ส่วนการออกแบบห้อง ผนังควรลดเสียงรบกวนจากภายนอก และควรเลือกวัสดุที่มีการสะท้อนเสียงได้ดี เพื่อให้ได้ยินเสียงชัดเจนขึ้น และยังเป็นการสร้างความมั่นใจในการใช้ชีวิตและกิจวัตรประจำวันในการสื่อสารให้กับผู้สูงอายุได้ด้วย​ขณะที่ห้องนอน ควรใช้สีฟ้าอ่อน เพราะเป็นสีที่กระตุ้นประสาทการรับรู้ ทำให้รู้สึกผ่อนคลาย ลดอาการนอนไม่หลับ ลดความเจ็บป่วย ที่สำคัญควรอยู่ในทิศตะวันออกและมีช่องรับแสงธรรมชาติเข้ามา เพื่อให้ร่างกายได้สร้างสารเคมีกระตุ้นสมอง ลดอาการซึมเศร้า ลดอาการเครียด และส่งเสริมคุณภาพการนอนหลับและระบบนาฬิกาชีวภาพ​นอกจากนี้ทุกห้องในบ้าน อากาศควรถ่ายเทได้ดี ลดการสะสมของมลพิษภายในห้อง และควรมีพื้นที่สีเขียว เพื่อเปิดโอกาสให้ได้รับเสียงจากธรรมชาติ อย่างเช่น เสียงลมพัด เสียงใบไม้ไหว เสียงนกร้อง หรือแม้แต่เสียงจากน้ำพุน้ำตก ซึ่งเสียงเหล่านี้จะทำให้สมองอยู่ในช่วงอัลฟา (Alpha Wave 9-14 Hz) ทำให้จิตใจสงบและมีสมาธิ ช่วยส่งเสริมสุขภาพกายและจิตใจไปพร้อมๆ กัน​  

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7 Design Aspects for Healthy Built-Environment: Living Quality

By RISC | 6 months ago

  Good quality of life in a house or condominium requires the right surroundings and community. Life quality has 2 key aspects:​1. Communal facilities ​Multipurpose areas for communities can enhance life quality and build relationships, such as through garden design that supports horticultural therapy. Gardening is a popular choice because research shows that just 30 minutes of gardening boosts mood and reduces depression, anxiety, and cortisol levels.​Playing with pets can also enhance happiness and well-being, even benefiting the heart and arteries, according to the US National Institutes of Health.​2. Building structure ​Comfort and durability matter in homes as much as appearance. If you feel anxious or worried, your cortisol levels will rise, affecting your brain in the long term. Good design and a lasting warranty are important for peace of mind, covering: ​- Structure, such as columns, beams, and floors- Roofs, to safeguard from leaks- Pipes and wiring, to be free from leaks or short circuits​- Doors and windows, to function correctly​A pleasant environment with communal areas for relaxing with family and friends can create a good social atmosphere for living. Good residential design and a lasting warranty can further enhance quality of life in every aspect, building confidence and comfort.​   References: Soga, M., et al. (2017). Health benefits of urban allotment gardening: improved physical and psychological well-being and social integration. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(1), 71. ​ Van Den Berg, A. E., & Custers, M. H. (2011). Gardening promotes neuroendocrine and affective restoration from stress. Journal of Health Psychology, 16(1), 3-11. ​ Katherine Jacobs Bao and George Schreer Department of Psychology, Manhattanville College, New York, USA ​ National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services ​   DANNY LIPFORD by his 40-year remodeling career, Lipford, D., & Backed by his 40-year remodeling career. (2020, September 04). How Your Home Affects Your Mental Health. Retrieved September 08, 2020, from ​

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7 Design Aspects for Healthy Built-Environment: Living with Nature

By RISC | 6 months ago

  Do you feel relaxed surrounded by nature or greenery?​An outdoor environment with trees or gardens can enhance mental health and reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, according to research. If over 20% of your neighborhood is green, you’ll feel less stress. If it’s over 30%, your anxiety will decrease too.​Nature therapy includes healing garden design focused on landscapes with trees, flowers, ponds, and waterfalls to provide pleasant colors, smells, and sounds. This theory can be applied in gardens at hospitals and healthcare facilities for older adults, children, and anyone whose body and mind need care. Stress and mental health problems can affect anyone and any gender or age. That's why a healing garden is another good choice to create a proper environment for good physical and mental well-being.​Many kinds of animal live in green areas too. Green spaces in urban areas can enhance biodiversity by connecting people, animals, and the environment for natural balance.​Preserving green areas and creating gardens are crucial for good physical and mental health and for keeping nature and humans in harmony.​In the next post, we’ll explain more about living quality and its physical and mental benefits. Stay tuned! ​   Reference: Beyer, K. M., et al.(2014). Exposure to neighborhood green space and mental health: evidence from the survey of health of wisconsin. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 11(3), 3453-72. ​Cox, D. T. C., et al. (2017). Doses of Neighborhood Nature: The Benefits for Mental Health of Living with Nature. Bioscience, biw173. ​White, M. P., Alcock, I., Wheeler, B. W., & Depledge, M. H. (2013). Would You Be Happier Living in a Greener Urban Area? A Fixed-Effects Analysis of Panel Data. Psychological Science, 24(6), 920-928. doi:10.1177/0956797612464659 ผู้ที่อยู่อาศัยใกล้พื้นที่สีเขียว อย่างสวนสาธารณะ มีความทุกข์ ทรมานใจลดลง และมีสุขภาวะที่ดีขึ้น

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