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What are the health consequences of air pollution?

Exposure to high levels of air pollution can cause a variety of adverse health outcomes. It increases the risk of respiratory infections, heart disease and lung cancer. Both short and long term exposure to air pollutants have been associated with health impacts. More severe impacts affect people who are already ill. Children, the elderly and poor people are more susceptible. The most health-harmful pollutants – closely associated with excessive premature mortality – are fine PM2.5 particles that penetrate deep into lung passageways.

(taken from the WHO website).

We all know that air pollution in Malta is very high and in some areas it is even more dense then others. Local studies had found that it is prevalent in Naxxar, Lija, Sliema, B’Kara and Fgura due to the fact that these are all areas were heavy traffic pass from. Being overpopulated does not help as figures collected by the NSO show that there are 1,500 private vehicles for every 1,000 drivers. Apart from pollution from car exhaust, there are other forms of air pollution produced by the construction and other industries.

Is there anything at all that we can do?

Yes there are things to help reduce air pollution and improve our health. From being mindful to what you do to help lower air pollution to what you eat, increasing on food that contain antioxidants.

Here are some things you can do:

  • If you need to use your car, plan your trips well and when necessary, use public transport.

  • Turn of lights when not in use.

  • Recycle and avoid one time use plastic. Remember that energy is used to recycle plastic and there are of course fumes to be considered.

  • Avoid burning leaves and other things outside and minimise the use of stoves and fireplaces.

  • Go for walks in the countryside and by the sea where the number of cars is minimal and the air quality is better.

  • Look for organic farmers and buy your fruit and vegetables from there. Increase the amount of fruit and vegetables that you consume daily.

  • You can help yourself further by taking a supplement made with vitamins and minerals that are referred to as anti oxidants such as BetterYou Air Defence Oral Spray.

What are Antioxidants and why are they important?

Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals in your body.

Free radicals are compounds that can cause harm if their levels become too high in your body. They’re linked to multiple illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

A diet high in antioxidants may reduce the risk of these diseases Antioxidants scavenge free radicals from the body cells and prevent or reduce the damage caused by oxidation. The protective effect of antioxidants continues to be studied around the world.

If you wish to know more on the subject of pollution you can read Here

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