Blood Pressure: Physical activity can reduce the risk of hypertension in people exposed to high air pollution levels
New Delhi : Blood pressure problems have become increasingly common. Blood pressure is a chronic health condition which can often lead to other health problems like diabetes and heart diseases. Blood pressure is more common in people who live in areas which have high air pollution levels.
In a study published in the American Heart Association's Flagship journal, Circulation studied the link between air pollution, blood pressure and exercise. A large number of people live in high air pollution area which tends to take a toll on their body but researchers have claimed that physical activity can be beneficial for the body.
The author of the study, Xiang Qian Lao has a PhD and is an associate professor at the Jockey Club of Public Health and Primary Care at the University of Hong Kong located in Shatin. Professor Xiang Qian Lao said, "Extended outdoor activity in urban areas increases the intake of air pollutants, which can worsen the harmful health effects of air pollution. While we found that high physical activity combined with lower air pollution exposure was linked to lower risk of high blood pressure, physical activity continued to have a protective effect even when people were exposed to high pollution levels. The message is that physical activity, even in polluted air, is an important high blood pressure prevention strategy."
The researchers found that when the air pollution levels were increased, the risk of hypertension also increased but an increase in physical activity reduced the risk of high blood pressure by 6 per cent. Exercise can reduce the risk of hypertension depending upon the intensity of the exercise. Russel V Luepker, group author and volunteer expert at the American Heart Association said, “The link between pollution and cardiovascular disease may include the development of hypertension along with other factors associated with particulate matter in air pollution."