2016 Volume 54 Issue 3 Pages 215-223
We aimed to examine the effect of micronutrient losses through sweat on blood pressure (BP) among heat-exposed steelworkers. A total of 224 heat-exposed male steelworkers from an ironworks facility were evaluated in July 2012. We measured the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature Index to evaluate the level of heat stress in the workplace. We collected sweat from the workers during an eight-hour work, and then we measured the micronutrients in the sweat. We also measured the BP of each worker. The results revealed that vitamin C, potassium, and calcium losses in sweat were positively correlated with systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) blood pressure (all P<0.05). A linear stepwise regression analysis revealed that potassium, and calcium losses in sweat adversely affected SBP and DBP (all P<0.05). An analysis of covariance showed that SBP increased when potassium or calcium losses in sweat were >900 mg, or >100 mg, respectively. Further, DBP increased when potassium or calcium losses in sweat were >600 mg or >130 mg, respectively. Therefore, vitamin C, potassium, and calcium losses in sweat may adversely effect BP. To help steelworkers maintain healthy BP, facilities with high temperatures should try to lower environmental temperatures to reduce vitamin C, potassium, and calcium losses in sweat. Additionally, heat-exposed steelworkers may need to increase their dietary intakes of vitamin C, potassium, and calcium. Further research is needed to confirm these findings and support these recommendations.