(TNS)—Exposure to indoor environments is at an all-time high. In fact, Americans spend more than 90 percent of their time indoors, whether at home, work, school, retail stores, fitness centers, health care facilities and more. But what many people don’t realize is that buildings, and everything in them, can affect human health and well-being. Mayo Clinic recently opened the Well Living Lab, a new research facility dedicated to studying these environments and creating healthier indoor spaces in which to live, work and play.
“There is a growing awareness and body of scientific evidence that indoor, built environments can affect human health and well-being, with the perception often being that indoor environments have a negative impact on health,” says Dr. Brent Bauer, medical director of the Well Living Lab and professor of medicine for Mayo Clinic Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program. “But new knowledge shows that by building healthier indoor environments, we can actually preserve and enhance human health and quality of life.”
Delos and Mayo Clinic have collaborated on the design and development of the Well Living Lab, as well as defining the research agenda. The Lab, which is adjacent to the campus of Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., features research space that is sensor-rich and can be reconfigured to simulate a wide variety of real-world environments. This will allow researchers to design innovative studies to better understand how indoor spaces, and everything in them, can positively influence human health. Areas of study will include the impact on humans from environmental factors such as lighting, noise, air quality and temperature, as well as products and technologies that are used to create and furnish indoor spaces.
Additionally, opportunities to participate in the Lab are available to companies who have a vested interest in healthier indoor environments for their employees and customers, as well as those whose products and services have the potential to impact indoor environments.
“There is a movement taking hold to make healthier indoor spaces a priority in both residential and commercial real estate,” says Peter Scialla, chief operating officer of Delos and a member of the Lab’s Joint Steering Committee. “Building on existing standards which guide developers and manufacturers of products and services toward this goal, the Well Living Lab will be a leader in translating scientific research into practical solutions for indoor environments that have the potential to enhance human health and quality of life in a multitude of ways.”
To learn more, visit www.WellLivingLab.com.
©2015 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research
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