What measures can I take to protect my health from air pollution?

From industrial emissions to traffic fumes, air quality can take a significant toll on health, causing a range of respiratory problems and even impacting other systems in the body. These are some steps you can take to minimize the impact of air pollution on your health:

Minimize Outdoor Exposure:

  • Track the AQI: Check the Air Quality Index (AQI) daily. When levels are high (above 100), limit outdoor activities, especially early mornings and evenings when pollution tends to peak.

  • Mask Up: Wear an N95 or N99 mask whenever you’re outside, especially during high pollution periods.

  • Shift Activities: If possible, adjust your exercise routine to evenings or even consider indoor workouts.

:person_tipping_hand:t6: Note: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has established a clear link between air pollution and respiratory illnesses like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and even lung cancer. A staggering report (2019) by The Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health revealed that air pollution is directly or indirectly responsible for over 2.3 million deaths in India annually.

Indoor Air Quality:

  • Close Windows: Keep windows and doors shut, especially during peak pollution hours.

  • Air it Out: When the AQI allows, open windows for short periods during the day to allow fresh air circulation (ideally between 3 pm - 5 pm or 11 pm to 5 am when pollution levels are usually lower).

  • Plant Power: Houseplants like aloe vera, spider plants, and money plants can help purify indoor air.

  • Cleanliness is Key: Regularly vacuum and dust your home to remove settled pollutants.

Diet and Lifestyle:

  • Eat for Immunity: Fill your plate with fruits rich in Vitamin C (amla, oranges), magnesium (leafy greens), and Omega-3 fatty acids (fish). Consider adding jaggery (gur) in small amounts (diabetes patients should consult with a physician or doctor) to your diet to help cleanse the lungs.

  • Hydrate: Drink plenty of water to flush toxins and keep your respiratory system moist.

  • Herbal Help: You may take ginger-tulsi tea in your routine for its soothing properties.

  • Limit Smoking: Avoid smoking and secondhand smoke exposure, which significantly worsen respiratory problems.

Read more: Protect Yourself from Pollution (famalth.com)

Long-Term Solutions:

  • Public Transport: Opt for public transport, carpooling, or cycling whenever possible to reduce personal vehicle emissions.

  • Support Clean Air Initiatives: Stay informed about air quality issues and support policies that promote cleaner air.

Remember, even small changes in your daily routine can significantly reduce your exposure to pollution and protect your health.

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