Scientists at the University of Louisville in the United States have shown that living near green spaces, as well as frequent walks in parks, can be a way to offset the negative impact of polluted air on heart and blood vessel health, which reduces the risk of premature death. This is reported in an article published in the American Journal of Physiology-Heart and Circulatory Physiology. Briefly about the scientific work is described in the press release on MedicalXpress.
The researchers analyzed the stiffness of the arteries in adult volunteers with comorbid conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol, placing the participants in the medium to high risk of heart disease. In addition, environmental factors of the volunteers' residences were taken into account, including the vegetation index (an indicator of the level of vegetation), the concentration of particulate matter and ozone in the air.
When particulate matter and ozone levels were high, the participants showed higher arterial stiffness, but those who lived in areas with more green space had improved blood vessel function. At the same time, the influence of vegetation remained high even when taking into account the lifestyle of the volunteers.