A Planetary Health Perspective on Agroforestry in Sub-Saharan Africa

Human activities change the structure and function of the environment with cascading impacts on human health, a concept known as “planetary health.” Agroforestry—the management of trees with crops and livestock—alters microclimates, hydrology, biogeochemistry, and biodiversity. Besides the nutritional benefits of increased fruit consumption, however, the ways agroforestry affects human health are rarely articulated. This review makes that link. We analyze the pathways through which tree-based farm and landscape change affect food and nutrition security, the spread of infectious disease, the prevalence of non-communicable diseases, and human migration in Sub-Saharan Africa.