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Air Pollution Makes Earth Dwellers Even Dumber –Study

Posted by feww on August 28, 2018

Submitted by a reader

Let’s face it, you must be cognitively challenged to emit so much pollution in the first place!

Prolonged exposure to polluted air has a significant impact on our cognitive abilities, especially in older men, according to a new study.

Breathing dirty air causes a “steep reduction” in scores on verbal and math tests, says the report.

“Most of the population in developing countries live in places with unsafe air. Utilizing variations in transitory and cumulative air pollution exposures for the same individuals over time in China, we provide evidence that polluted air may impede cognitive ability as people become older, especially for less educated men, the report claims.

“Cutting annual mean concentration of particulate matter smaller than 10 μm (PM10) in China to the Environmental Protection Agency’s standard (50 μg/m3) would move people from the median to the 63rd percentile (verbal test scores) and the 58th percentile (math test scores), respectively. The damage on the aging brain by air pollution likely imposes substantial health and economic costs, considering that cognitive functioning is critical for the elderly for both running daily errands and making high-stake decisions.”

Air pollution linked to diabetes

Researchers found that air pollution contributed to 3.2 million new diabetes cases, or 14% of the global total in 2016. In the US, where 30 million adults have diabetes, air pollution results in over 150,000 new cases of diabetes each year.

The diagnosed cases of diabetes almost quadrupled between 1980 and 2014, jumping from 108 million to 422 million cases, WHO reported.

How many people breathe polluted air?

Nine out of every 10 people on the planet breathe air containing high levels of pollutants, with Africa and Asia being the worst affected areas, WHO reported earlier this year.

Air pollution was responsible for an estimated 9 million deaths in 2015, according to medical research.

“Ambient air pollution alone caused some 4.2 million deaths in 2016, while household air pollution from cooking with polluting fuels and technologies caused an estimated 3.8 million deaths in the same period,” according to WHO.

“Many of the world’s megacities exceed WHO’s guideline levels for air quality by more than 5 times, representing a major risk to people’s health,” says WHO.



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