HONG KONG: People who regularly exercise tend to have a lower risk of high blood pressure (BP), even if they live in areas where air pollution is relatively high, say researchers.
The risk-benefit relationship between air pollution and physical activity is an important public concern because more than 91 per cent of people worldwide live in areas where air quality does not meet the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines.
"Extended outdoor activity in urban areas increases the intake of air pollutants, which can worsen the harmful health effects of air pollution," said study author Xiang Qian Lao from the Chinese University of Hong Kong.
"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," Lao added.
According to the study the message is that physical activity, even in polluted air, is an important high blood pressure prevention strategy. The benefits of regular physical activity held up regardless of the pollution level. (IANS)