What Does your Home have to do with Hypertension?

Researchers believe the "local environment" has a strong link with high levels of Blood Pressure.

Islamabad (28th June, 2019): Recent study shows hypertension and metabolic syndrome has strong link with where you live and the state of your home. 

According to Baaghi TV’s source, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determines that hypertension or high blood pressure (BP) affects at least 1 in 3 adults within the United States alone. Hypertension forms part the ‘metabolic syndrome’, which according to science, is supposed to be a cluster of conditions including excess body fat around ones waist, abnormal cholesterol triglyceride in the blood, and blood sugar levels within the human body.

The risk factors for it may include obesity, diabetes as well as an alarming increase in age, and genetics. Furthermore, while the above are factors that may lead to high blood pressure, there are also smoking, dietary factors [such as consumption of high salt levels], alcohol and stress. Based on studies, researchers are now attempting to understand the exact range of factors which may cause the condition of high BP in a growing number of people and whether our living space [homes] has anything to do with it. Thereby new studies have been published in the Journal of Public Health, by scientists from the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences.

Based on earlier studies, exposure to air pollution and its relationship with high blood pressure lead to conflicting results. However, a meta-analysis of seventeen studies published in the Journal of Public Health in 2016 concluded:

“Short-term or long-term exposure to some air pollutants may increase the risk of hypertension”.

Authors of the ongoing research re paying considerable attention to average exposure to air pollution and its distance from green spaces and/or major roads. They are also focusing on the differences between living in a multifamily home such as flats or private family homes. As confirmed, they are specifically looking for links between the factors and any risk of developing ‘arterial hypertension’ and measures of metabolic syndrome such as reduced levels of good cholesterol [or high-density lipoprotein cholesterol  (HDL)], obesity, elevated blood sugar levels and even high triglyceride levels.

The data which is based on results of questionnaires filled out by approximately 1,354 people, who lived in the same location for a 10-year duration to aid the study. Questions varied from education to alcohol consumption including smoking status and levels of physical activity, as well as blood pressure medication and lipid-lowering treatment.

So far, the researchers have been able to identify the protein(s) which may help prevent or even reverse the process of diabetes. According to a recent study conducted on mice, it has been suggested that targeting a protein within fat cells can reverse type 2 diabetes. Therefore, by each using the address of a participant, the research team could predict their level of exposure to air pollution. Moreover, they calculated the distance to the nearest green space(s) and major roads. Based on their calculation the green spaces were defined as a park larger than roughly 1 hectare [10,000 sq. meters].

The researchers further attempted to control variables such as BMI [body mass index], consumption of salt and education level(s). They inferred that long-term exposure to air pollution levels above median lead to an increase in risk of having lower HDL. Even average exposure increased the risk of having higher levels of triglycerides.

The researchers concluded that living close to major roads increased the chances of an individual suffering from hypertension. They discovered that this factor was only important for those individuals who lived in multifamily homes. Whereas, those living in single-family homes had lesser chances of having to deal with hypertension even if they were exposed to similar levels of air pollution.

The study authors further discovered, other factors also go hand in hand with living in these type of living spaces. On the other hands, they found a positive effect of living near public green spaces.  They concluded:

“We should regulate as much as possible the living space for one person in multifamily houses, improve the noise insulation of apartments, and promote the development of green spaces in multifamily houses”.


Stay tuned to Baaghi TV for more updates.

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