Study shows air pol­lu­tion can af­fect blood pres­sure

The Myanmar Times - - World -

LONG-TERM ex­po­sure to ur­ban air pol­lu­tion in­cre­men­tally in­creases the risk of high blood pres­sure, ac­cord­ing to a study re­leased yes­ter­day of more than 41,000 Euro­pean city-dwellers.

Con­stant noise pol­lu­tion – es­pe­cially traf­fic – also boosts the like­li­hood of hy­per­ten­sion, re­searchers re­ported in the Euro­pean Heart Journal.

High blood pres­sure is the most im­por­tant risk fac­tor for pre­ma­ture ill­ness and death.

The study found that one ex­tra adult per 100 peo­ple of roughly the same age de­vel­oped high blood pres­sure in the most pol­luted part of towns com­pared to more breath­able neigh­bour­hoods.

The risk is sim­i­lar to be­ing clin­i­cally over­weight with a body mass in­dex (BMI) of 25-30, the re­searchers said.

To carry out the study, 33 ex­perts led by Bar­bara Hoff­mann, a pro­fes­sor at Hein­rich-HeineUniver­sity in Dues­sel­dorf, Ger­many, mon­i­tored 41,071 peo­ple in Nor­way, Swe­den, Den­mark, Ger­many and Spain for five to nine years.

At the same time, the re­searchers ex­am­ined air qual­ity in each lo­cale dur­ing three twoweek pe­ri­ods be­tween 2008 and 2011, mea­sur­ing dif­fer­ent sizes of par­ti­cle mat­ter.

Ev­ery in­cre­ment of 5 mi­cro­grams – or mil­lionths of a gram – of the small­est of these par­ti­cles upped the risk of hy­per­ten­sion by one-fifth for peo­ple liv­ing in the most pol­luted ar­eas, com­pared to those in the least pol­luted. –

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