More biodiversity to improve our health: The benefits to human well-being of favouring functional and diverse ecosystems

Fernando Valladares


There is ample evidence that contact with nature generates measurable benefits for people’s psychological and physiological health. There is also abundant research showing that well-conserved ecosystems with high levels of biodiversity serve additional functions, including the reduction of risks to human health from animal-borne infections (zoonoses such as Covid-19) or climate change. The United Nations first coined the concept of One Health specifically to encourage the multidisciplinary study of human health in the global context of animal, plant, and ecosystem health, thereby enabling progress towards more preventive and effective medicine.


biodiversity; ecosystem services; One Health; zoonoses; prevention

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