Home sweet home? Home physical environment and inflammation in children

Soc Sci Res. 2016 Nov:60:236-248. doi: 10.1016/j.ssresearch.2016.04.001. Epub 2016 Apr 6.


The home environment includes important social and physical contexts within which children develop. Poor physical home environments may be a potential source of stress for children through difficult daily experiences. Using a sub-sample from the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey (N = 425), we consider how the home physical environment affects stress-related immune system dysregulation in children ages 3-18 years. Results indicated that children in poorer quality homes had higher inflammation (measured by C-reactive protein). The associations were particularly strong for younger children. We also found that part of the home physical environment association with CRP worked through increased risk of obesity for children living in low-quality homes. Future research should assess how home physical environments could be improved to reduce stress and improve health outcomes in children.

Keywords: CRP; Housing; L.A.FANS; Obesity; Poverty; Stress.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Environment
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inflammation*
  • Los Angeles
  • Male
  • Obesity*
  • Residence Characteristics*