We all want to make healthy choices and live a stronger, healthier and fuller life. But aside from abstaining from smoking, eating mindfully and working out every day, there are still certain risk factors that put our health into danger. The greatest possible risk to our health is always all around us, it envelops us like a thick cloud and we can’t seem to escape it. Yes, it is none other than air pollution. There are countless studies that reveal air pollution can be extremely toxic for the heart, and it puts you at risk for contracting a heart disease. Air pollution is fueled by the fine particulates emitted from fires, factories, smoking and motor vehicles, and it causes serious damage to your blood vessels.
Air pollution is also responsible for causing inflammation in healthy youngsters and adults, and it is increasingly putting us all at risk for heart ailments. Researchers reveal that air pollution and heart diseases are strongly linked, especially heart strokes and attacks. And such results are not just prevalent in older and middle-aged individuals, but also healthy youngsters. Air pollution affects us all, even if our body is healthy and we don’t have any of the other risk factors.
Polluted urban life has been ruled out as a major and largely prevalent cause of heart diseases. A recent study revealed that individuals who tend to spend more time outdoors and have a greater exposure to high levels of air population tend to experience increased blood sugar levels, and their cholesterol levels also tend to worsen. As compared to individuals who get exposed to comparatively lower levels of air pollution, they had higher Bad LDL and lower Good HDL.
Now, as frightening as all this may sound, you can still lower your exposure to air pollution and eliminate this awful risk to your heart. Take these 6 preventive steps and keep your healthy and fit!
1. Avoid burning wood
If you are fond of wooden stoves and fireplaces, allow me to tell you that when burnt, wood emits the most harmful of poisonous smoke. Therefore, pick out a gas or electric stove and fireplace to keep your environment free of pollutants. However, if you must keep your fireplace ablaze, pick out seasoned and dried wood instead.
2. Travel Less
Traveling less during the rush hours and avoiding routes that you know for a fact are going to jam packed with traffic can help you reduce your exposure to air pollution. However, if you can’t avoid certain routes when traffic is at its peak, be sure to keep your windows shut and use the air recirculation settings to keep pollution out.
Also, it is important to air out your vehicle every now and then in order to get rid of the accumulated carbon dioxide you’ve been exhaling, as it can cause drowsiness and fatigue.
3. Exhaust Fans
Cooking also creates smoke that exposes your indoor environment to fine particulate air matter. But an exhaust fan can vent this air outdoors and save you all the trouble.
4. Avoid Pine & Citric Home Products
Home products such as cleaning products and air fresheners that have citrus or pine scents tend to harmful as they react with the ozone present in the air and create pollutants.
5. Filter your air
Filtering your air and eliminating all the pollutants is extremely important, so get a high-efficiency filter installed within your central forced air system.
The filter will make sure no microscopic particles and pollutants enter your indoor environment. If your house isn’t equipped with a central air system, get a portable high-efficiency air cleaner installed instead.
6. Do your research
The best thing is to do your own pollution research, just log on to airnow.gov, take a look at the air quality levels of the city and area you live in, and if the pollution level is horribly high, stay indoors instead of hitting the streets. Now obviously, you can’t avoid the busy roads when you have to go to work. But try avoiding it when you can, for instance, if you like running or jogging on the streets, avoid highways, busy roads and traffic junctions.
Avoiding air pollution isn’t that difficult. You just need to make yourself more aware of the phenomenon that the air you breathe in can really disrupt your heart, and put your life at serious risk. Along with of course, the heart and life of your loved ones and family members. So, take whatever measures you can to clean the air in your environment, get rid of all air pollutants, and try to stay indoors when the pollution levels are at its peak. And if you must step outdoors during these peak hours, take proper measures and keep your windows tightly shut.