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Health News Results - 169

Polluted Air Keeps Butterflies, Bees From Pollinating: Study

As air pollution worsens, fruits, flowers and the creatures that pollinate them could pay a price.

That's the takeaway from British researchers who used special equipment to control levels of two common pollutants — diesel exhaust and ozone — in a field of black mustard plants, and then monitored pollinating insects over two summers.

"We knew from our previous lab studies that ...

You Don't Have to Be a Smoker to Get Lung Cancer

Think you're safe from lung cancer because you've never smoked? Think again.

While cigarette smoking is the main cause of lung cancer, it's possible to get the disease without ever lighting up.

"Anyone with lungs can get lung cancer," said Dr. Missak Haigentz Jr., chief of Thoracic and Head and Neck Medical Oncology at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey in New Brunswick.

...

Cleaner Air Could Mean Healthier Brains for Older Women

Everyone knows cleaner air means healthier bodies, but new research suggests it might also help aging minds.

"Our study is important because it is one of the first to show that reducing air pollution over time may benefit the brain health of older women by decreasing their likelihood of developing dementia," said...

Wildfires Plus Heat Make Breathing Dangerous in America's West

Wildfires and rising temperatures are exposing more and more Americans to an air pollution double-whammy of smoke and smog, a new study warns.

Researchers found that over the past 20 years, a growing number of people in western states have been simultaneously exposed to high levels of two kinds of air pollution: Fine-particle pollution generated by

  • Amy Norton HealthDay Reporter
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  • January 12, 2022
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  • Full Page
  • Urban Air Pollution Drives Millions of Cases of Asthma in Kids

    Far fewer kids might develop asthma if there were less traffic pollution, suggests a new study that researched the issue worldwide.

    "Our study found that nitrogen dioxide puts children at risk of developing asthma and the problem is especially acute in urban areas," said study author Susan Anenberg, a professor of environmental and occupational health at George Washington University in Wa...

    Dirty City Air Killed More Than 1.8 Million People Globally in 2019

    Cities worldwide are shrouded with air pollution -- and it’s killing people.

    A new modeling study found that 86% of people living in cities throughout the world -- a total of 2.5 billion people -- are exposed to fine particulate matter at levels that exceed the World Health Organization’s 2005 guidelines.

    In 2019, this urban air pollution led to 1.8 million excess deaths, acco...

    Most of Restaurant Menu Must Be Vegetarian Before Meat Eaters Make the Switch

    Meat eaters are far more apt to choose plant-based foods at restaurants if menus are at least 75% vegetarian, according to a new study.

    Along with the health benefits, British researchers said getting more people to eat plant-based foods could help fight climate change.

    "Th...

    Across the U.S., Black Americans Breathe in Dirtier Air

    Is air pollution a bigger health threat to minorities?

    Apparently so, claims a new U.S. study that finds while air pollution levels have fallen in recent decades, people of color still have more exposure to dirty air than white Americans do.

    Air pollution is linked to a range of heal...

    Toxins in Wildfire Smoke May Make Their Way Into Brain

    The smoke from wildfires is dangerous for your lungs, but tiny particles from the smoke can also enter your brain and cause lifelong neurological issues, a new animal study suggests.

    Once that happens, the particles may put people at risk for everything from premature aging and various forms of dementia to depression and even psychosis, researchers say.

    "These are fires that are com...

    Smog Could Reduce Exercise's Benefit to Your Brain

    Dirty air could cancel out some of the brain benefits of exercise, a new study suggests.

    "Physical activity is associated with improved markers of brain health in areas with lower air pollution," said study author Melissa Furlong. "However, some beneficial effects essentially disappeared for vigorous physical activity in areas with the highest levels of air pollution." Furlong is an envi...

    NYC's Ban on Heating Oil Helped Clean the Air

    New York City's ban on a certain type of heating oil led to significant reductions in air pollutants that pose a risk to health, new research shows.

    “It is very encouraging to see the overall success of the Clean Heat Program in reducing pollution levels in the city, and particularly exciting to find that the policy is effective in both low- and high-income neighborhoods,” lead author...

    Could Pollution Help Decide Your Baby's Sex?

    A boy or a girl? New research suggests that the air pregnant women breathe or the water they drink could play a role in their baby's sex.

    The finding stems from tracking hundreds of factors — including pollution exposure — surrounding the birth of more than 6 million Americans...

    Pandemic Data Suggests Cars Spew More Ammonia Than Suspected

    COVID-19 lockdowns brought surprising news to scientists studying pollution: Cars spew much more ammonia into the air than previously thought.

    Ammonia is a common air pollutant that's a major cause of lung and heart disease, especially in cities.

    “The tricky question has always been: How do we separate out ammonia concentrations owing to traffic from the ammonia emitted from sourc...

    Your Plant-Based Diet Could Really Help the Planet

    Worried about climate change? You can do something about it every time you lift your fork, a new study suggests.

    Folks can reduce their personal carbon footprint by eating less red meat, nibbling fewer sweets and cutting back on tea, coffee and booze, according to the findings.

    "We all want to do our bit to help save the planet," said senior researcher Darren Greenwood, a senior lec...

    Biden Announces New Lung Health Program for U.S. Veterans

    A new program to help U.S. veterans with lung problems caused by inhaling toxins while deployed was announced on Veterans Day by President Joe Biden.

    It will also assess the potential connection between cancers and time spent overseas breathing poor air, according to the White House.

    "We're discovering there is a whole host of lung conditions related to deployment," Dr. Richard Meeh...

    As Pandemic Cut Air Pollution, Heart Attacks Declined

    Urban air cleared during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns as fewer commuters hit the road daily, and that might have resulted in one unexpected heart health benefit for Americans, a new study suggests.

    Those reductions in air pollution appear to be linked to a decrease in heart attacks during the shutdowns, according to research slated for presentation Saturday at the American Heart Associ...

    Biden Administration Moves to Cut Methane Emissions That Threaten Climate, Health

    A new rule to sharply cut methane emissions and other oil and gas industry air pollutants that harm health and contribute to climate change is in the works.

    The new Clean Air Act rule proposed Tuesday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would cut 41 million tons of methane emissions between 2023 and 2035.

    That's the equivalent of 920 million metric tons of carbon dioxi...

    Brazil Study Shows Climate Change's Deadly Impact on Kidneys

    Global warming may pose a threat to your kidneys, new research suggests.

    For the study, researchers analyzed data from hospitals in more than 1,800 cities in Brazil between 2000 and 2015, and found that just over 7% of all admissions for kidney disease could be attributed to hotter temperatures.

    That equates to more than 202,000 cases of kidney disease, according to the report publi...

    A High-Tech Pointer to Pollutants That Trigger Asthma in Kids

    Dust mites and smoke are known triggers of asthma in children. Now, scientists have identified previously unknown combinations of air pollutants that appear tied to the respiratory disorder.

    "Asthma is one the most prevalent diseases affecting children in the United States. In this study, we developed a list of air pollutants a young child may be exposed to that can lead to longer-term pr...

    Air and Noise Pollution May Make You Vulnerable to Heart Failure

    Years of exposure to air pollution and traffic noise could make you more vulnerable to heart failure, a new study warns.

    "We found that long-term exposure to specific air pollutants and road traffic noise increased the risk of incident heart failure, especially for former smokers or people with hypertension, so preventive and educational measures are necessary," said lead study author You...

    Western Wildfires Are Making Easterners Sick: U.S. Study

    You might think that wildfires in the western United States would only affect folks in places like Colorado, California or Oregon.

    But a new study estimates that three-quarters of smoke-related deaths and visits to the emergency room for asthma in the United States happen east of the Rocky Mount...

    Tree Rings Show Hurricanes Becoming Wetter, Longer, More Dangerous

    The rings of stately pines on the coasts of North and South Carolina offer telling long-term evidence of climate change and a chilling forecast for the future.

    The upshot: The last 300 years have gotten wetter and wetter, making hurricanes ever more dangerous.

    "Our findings suggest that the maximum amount of rainfall from these storms is increasing and is likely going to continue to...

    Air Pollution Linked to 6 Million Premature Births in 1 Year

    Air pollution impacts the youngest humans, with new research linking dirty air to almost 6 million premature births and almost 3 million underweight babies worldwide in 2019.

    More than 90% of the world's population lives with polluted outdoor air, a new study points out. And its effects continue through the years: Preemies or children with low birth weight have higher rates of major illne...

    EPA to Sharply Limit Refrigerant Production in New Climate Rule

    In a move to combat global warming, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Thursday that it will restrict U.S. production and use of hydrofluorocarbons by 85% over the next 15 years.

    Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) are potent greenhouse gases often used in refrigerators and air conditioners, and they are vastly more powerful than carbon dioxide. These gases can leak into the a...

    Trouble Concentrating at Work? Your Office Air May Be to Blame

    It's fair to say most bosses want their employees to have high productivity.

    Unfortunately, the air that office workers breathe may put a damper on quick thinking and fast work.

    A new study found increased concentrations of fine particulate matter, called PM2.5, and lower ventilation rates were linked to slower response times and reduced accuracy.

    "PM2.5 is a very nasty pollut...

    9/11 First Responders Face Higher Cancer Risk 20 Years Later

    Twenty years on, responders to the World Trade Center attacks in New York City are showing increased risks of certain cancers, two new studies confirm.

    Researchers found higher-than-average rates of prostate cancer among firefighters, medics and other workers who toiled at the disaster site on and after Sept. 11, 2001.

    And compared with firefighters from other major U.S. cities...

    Is Your Workplace an Asthma Trigger?

    Workers, take heed: Your place of work can help bring on or exacerbate asthma, a new study suggests.

    Common workplace triggers include poor ventilation and moldy air conditioning systems, cleaning products and even the toner used in printers, the researchers said. Employees with asthma caused by the office environment often quit, the researchers said, especially if employers don't do anyt...

    Wildfires Cause More Than 33,000 Deaths Globally Each Year

    Wildfires are killing people around the world -- even those with limited exposure to wildfire-related pollution, an international team of researchers reports.

    The new research revealed that short-term exposure to wildfire-related fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in the air is i...

    Weight Loss Can Help Cut Lung Risks in 9/11 First Responders

    Twenty years on from the terrible event itself, weight loss may reduce the risk of lung disease among 9/11 first responders, a new study suggests.

    "Our findings should reassure World Trade Center first responders that there are steps they can take to protect their lungs even decades after exposure," said co-lead author Dr. Sophia Kwon. She's a fellow in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical...

    Greener Neighborhoods Bring Healthier Hearts, Study Shows

    The greener your neighborhood, the lower your risk of heart disease.

    That's the takeaway from a new study, which reported that adding to a neighborhood's green space can have a big payoff for public health.

    "For the cost of one emergency room visit for a heart attack, trees could be planted in a neighborhood with 100 residents and potentially prevent ten heart diseases," said study ...

    Wildfire Smoke Could Raise Odds for Preterm Delivery

    The health impact of wildfires is already huge, and new research suggests it might also raise a mom-to-be's risk for preterm birth, according to a new study.

    Wildfire smoke contains high levels of PM 2.5, the deadliest type of pollution from particles so fine they can embed deep in the lungs and pass into the bloodstream.

    "In the future, we expect to see more frequent and intense ex...

    Double Trouble: Wildfires Can Raise COVID Risks

    The wildfire smoke now smothering wide portions of the United States isn't just stinging eyes and tightening chests -- it also might be contributing to the current surge of severe COVID-19 cases.

    Data from three Western states subject to frequent wildfires shows that COVID-19 cases and deaths increase with the amount of smoke pollution in the air, according to a new study.

    As wildfi...

    Smoggy Day? Exercise Still the Healthy Choice, Study Finds

    The benefits of regular outdoor exercise in areas with air pollution outweigh the risks, a new, long-term study claims.

    "Habitual exercise reduces the risk of death regardless of exposure to air pollution, and air pollution generally increases the risk of death regardless of habitual exercise," said researcher Dr. Xiang Qian Lao, from the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Ca...

    Dirty Air, Higher Dementia Risk?

    It's long been know that polluted can damage the heart and lungs, but new research finds that it's bad for your brain, too.

    A long-term study by a Seattle team linked exposure to higher levels of fine particulate air pollution to an increased risk of dementia.

    "We found that an increase of 1 microgram per cubic meter of exposure corresponded to a 16% greater hazard of all-cause dem...

    Smoggy Air Might Help Spur Sinusitis

    Air pollution could cause sinus misery, new research suggests.

    Specifically, tiny particulate air pollution (known as PM2.5) could contribute to chronic rhinosinusitis, a condition in which the sinuses get infected or irritated, become swollen, are severely congested and secrete mucus into the throat for 12 weeks or more.

    "To our knowledge, this is the first study to report that lon...

    Cleaning Up the Air Could Help Prevent Alzheimer's

    Air pollution causes you to gasp and wheeze. Smog puts strain on your hearts and inflames your lungs.

    Could dirty air also be costing you your brain health?

    A trio of new studies finds that air quality appears linked to a risk of thinking declines and dementia, and bad air might even promote toxic brain proteins that are a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease.

    "This is extremely ex...

    Lockdowns Cut Air Pollution, But Poorer Neighborhoods Benefited Less

    If you thought the air was cleaner at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, you weren't imagining it. But clean skies were less evident in poorer areas of the United States, a new study finds.

    COVID-19 pandemic-related lockdowns reduced overall levels of nitrogen dioxide air pollution in many U.S. cities. However, levels remained higher in poorer, minority neighborhoods than in richer, whi...

    Double Trouble: Wildfire Smoke Could Boost Odds for COVID's Spread

    Breathing in smoke from wildfires may significantly increase the spread of COVID-19, researchers say.

    The warning, from a new study of links between smoke-caused air pollution and SARS-CoV-2 infections, comes as firefighters battle 80 large wildfires in the western United States. The largest -- 300 miles south of Portland, Ore. -- covers over 500 square miles.

    For this study, resear...

    More Air Pollution, Worse COVID Outcomes?

    The air people breathe -- and how much pollution is in it -- may make a difference in their outcomes when infected with COVID-19, a new study finds.

    Researchers found that living in more polluted areas -- including near sewage water dischargers and in close proximity to heavy traffic -- was linked with a greater likelihood of being admitted to the intensive care unit and more likelihood ...

    Leaded Gas, Banned Decades Ago, Might Still Harm People Today

    The good news: Levels of lead in the air that Londoners breathe are far lower today than they were in the 1980s, when leaded gas was an automotive staple.

    The bad news: Decades-old lead particles still pollute the city's air, a stubborn and potentially hazardous leftover of a now banned product. The findings might have implications for the health of city dwellers globally.

    In the ...

    Dirty Air in Pregnancy Might Raise Baby's Obesity Risk

    Children may have an increased risk of obesity if their mothers were exposed to high levels of air pollution during pregnancy, researchers say.

    In a new study, 123 Hispanic mother-infant pairs were enrolled in an ongoing trial in the Los Angeles region. Before pregnancy, about one-third of the mothers were normal weight, one-third were overweight and one-third were obese.

    The resear...

    Smog Might Damage Your Sense of Smell

    Breathing in tiny particles of air pollution over a long period of time may put your sense of smell at risk, a new study suggests.

    Researchers found the risk for loss of smell - a condition called anosmia - was nearly doubled among people with lengthy exposure to this type of air pollution, known as particulate matter.

    "It's curious that the entire group who had lost th...

    Fetal Exposure to Ultra-Fine Air Pollution Could Raise Asthma Risks

    Exposure to a certain type of air pollution while pregnant may up the odds that your child will develop asthma, a new study says.

    Children born to mothers exposed to high levels of ultra-fine particle air pollution during pregnancy have a significantly increased risk of asthma, researchers found.

    Ultra-fine particle pollution is smaller than the width of an average human hair and ca...

    Smoggy Air Might Raise Black Women's Odds for Fibroids


    TUESDAY, May 18, 2021 (HealthDay News) - Exposure to ozone air pollution may make Black women more likely to develop fibroids.

    Compared to women exposed to the lowest levels of the pollutant, Black women exposed to the highest levels had a 35% increased risk for developing the non-cancerous growths in and around their uterus. The link was even stronger among women younger than...

    Meat Production Is Dirtying the Air You Breathe

    Steaks and burgers could be killing thousands of Americans each year, but in a way most people wouldn't expect -- via air pollution.

    That's the conclusion of a new study estimating that airborne particles generated by food production kill nearly 16,000 Americans each year. Pollution related to animal products -- most notably beef -- accounts for 80% of those deaths.

    "What we eat aff...

    Air Pollution Can Harm Kids' Hearts for a Lifetime

    Air pollution isn't hard on the hearts of adults only, suggests a new analysis that found it can raise blood pressure in kids as young as 5.

    Children experienced increases in blood pressure if they had short-term exposure to air polluted with coarser particles or long-term exposure to finer airborne particles, and that also happened with long-term exposure to nitrogen dioxide, an air poll...

    Breathing Other People's Smoke Can Raise Your Odds for Heart Failure

    Exposure to secondhand smoke may up your odds for heart failure, a new study warns.

    Researchers analyzed nationwide survey data from more than 11,000 nonsmokers (average age: 48) who were followed from 1988 to 1994. Nearly 1 in 5 had lab test evidence of exposure to secondhand smoke.

    Nonsmokers with recent exposure were 35% more likely to develop heart failure than those with none, ...

    Wildfires Are Changing the Seasonal Air Quality of the U.S. West

    Increasing numbers of wildfires are making poor air quality more common throughout the Western United States, according to a new study.

    The findings suggest that many cities may soon have trouble meeting air quality standards, said lead author Kai Wilmot, a doctoral student in atmospheric sciences at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.

    Wilmot's team examined Western air qualit...

    Breathing Dirty Air Could Raise a Child's Risk for Adult Mental Illness

    Kids exposed to air pollution may be at risk for mental illness in early adulthood, a new study suggests.

    Researchers found that young adults in Britain who were exposed to higher levels of traffic-related air pollutants during their childhood and teen years were prone to develop symptoms of mental illness later. Nitrogen oxides were a particular problem, the study authors reported.

    Wildfire Smoke Can Trigger Eczema, Study Finds

    When wildfires choked the air and turned the skies orange throughout the American West in recent years, they caused a variety of health problems from coughs and runny noses to life-threatening heart attacks and strokes.

    But eczema and other skin issues were a result of the wildfires, too, according to researchers from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and the University ...