Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia

Forests and Human Health



Academic unit

Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia


Departamento de Ciências da Terra



Teacher in charge

Fernando Henrique da Silva Reboredo

Weekly hours


Total hours


Teaching language



To understand the importance of the forests in the evolution of human societies

To recognize the main threats to the world´s forests

To recognize the importance of the forests as sources of bioactive compounds and drugs

To recognize the effects of deforestation in human health

Subject matter

People, forests and food. The importance of forest and forest-based products in the survival and expansion of human societies. The importance of forest in the consolidation of the Portuguese territory.

Human health problems associated with forests – as forest ecosystem alterations may increase spread of diseases

Forests and medicine - forest as a source of bioactive compounds and drugs.

Role of indigenous culture in treatment diseases. Traditional knowledge and beliefs.

The European Forest Policy - the main forest action programs.


Colfer C.J.P. (ed). 2012. Human Health and Forests: A Global Overview of Issues, Practice and Policy. 2nd edit., Earthscan Ltd., 400 pp

Nilsson K. et al., (Editors). 2011. Forests, Trees and Human Health, Springer, 427 pp

International Forestry Review, 2011. Vol. 13(3) Special Issue: Forests, Biodiversity and Food Security.

Karjalainen E., Sarjala T., Raitio H. (2010) Environ Health Prev Med 15:1–8

Chaves L.F. et al., (2008) PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2(2): e176.

Unasylva, FAO (2006) Forests and Human Health, Vol. 57, nº 224

Colfer C.J.P., Sheil D., Kishi M. 2006. Forests and Human Health. Assessing the Evidence, CIFOR, Occasional Paper nº45, 121 pp