Vitamin B supplements could diminish toxic effects of air pollution

According to a recent American study published in the journal Scientific Reports, vitamin B supplements could significantly diminish the toxic effects of air pollution on the immune and cardiovascular systems.

WebMD Drugs and Supplements

Vitamin B cocktails

The study, entitled “B-vitamin Supplementation Mitigates Effects of Fine Particles on Cardiac Autonomic Dysfunction and Inflammation: A Pilot Human Intervention Trial,” researched the impact of air pollution in moderately polluted urban areas on a panel of ten healthy nonsmokers aged between 18 and 60 years old from July 2013 to February 2014. Researchers found found that a cocktail/mixture of B-vitamins (50mg of B6, 2.5mg of B9 and 1mg of B12) taken for four weeks significantly reduced the harmful impact of fine particle pollution (PM2.5 pollution) by 150% on heart rate, 139% on total white blood count and 106% on lymphocyte count.

Applicability to China

Unfortunately, the beneficial effects of vitamin B observed in the study may not necessarily apply to populations at higher risk of pollution-induced cardiovascular effects, such as children, the elderly, individuals with preexisting cardiovascular disease, smokers or those living in heavily polluted areas. China remains one of the three leading countries in total number of smokers, and also boasts some of the highest PM2.5 concentrations in the world.

WebMD Beijing Air Pollution

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), ambient fine particulate matter (PM2.5) pollution contributes to 3.7 million premature deaths per year worldwide, predominantly through acute effects on the cardiovascular system. Moreover, 92 percent of the world’s population lives in places where air pollution levels exceed 10 micrograms/m3 of fine particles (PM2.5).

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