Last year, this time, New Delhi was covered with a cloud of smoke and fog. There was much furore on the health negatives it exposed Delhiites with. Several steps were taken since last year, like the firecracker ban, in hopes to keep the deadly cloud away this year. But the smog is back.
In this article I give you some tips to help you keep the health consequences at a minimum.
Particulate Matter and Health
The particulate matter suspended in air (like the PM 2.5), due to its small size, penetrates deep in the lungs. At the least, it causes irritation and inflammation in the respiratory system, leading to wheezing and asthma. According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer, particulate matter is a common carcinogen and has been associated with high risks of lung cancer occurrences.
Vitamin C, the saviour
A diet rich in this vitamin can help maintain a healthy immune system. Not only does it help reduce the chance of infections, but also helps controls a hypersensitive immune system, proving to be helpful in allergies and inflammation.
Vitamin C is also a potent antioxidant. It hunts down the free-radicals that cause cell damage and ageing.
In another study, vitamin C has been found effective in alleviating cancer and chemotherapy symptoms.
Sources of the Vitamin
To increase your vitamin c, it is always better to rely on natural sources. Among strong sources of the wonder vitamin are Sea Buckthorn, Cranberry, and Oranges. You can consume these whole or rely on juices. Sea buckthorn, which may not be readily available as fruit, can be taken benefit of in juice form. This superfood is among the most potent sources of vitamin c , almost 12 times more Vitamin C than our well known Oranges and other essential nutrients.
Control, Division of Air Pollution. “How Smog Affects Health.” EPA IMAGE, epa.ohio.gov/dapc/echeck/whyecheck/healthef.aspx.
Hamra GB, Guha N, Cohen A, Laden F, Raaschou-Nielsen O, Samet JM, Vineis P, Forastiere F, Saldiva P, Yorifuji T, Loomis D. 2014. Outdoor particulate matter exposure and lung cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Environ Health Perspect 122:906–911; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408092
BD, Yazdani Shaik, and Pio Conti. “Relationship between Vitamin C, Mast Cells and Inflammation.” OMICS International, OMICS International, 18 Jan. 2016, www.omicsonline.org/open-access/relationship-between-vitamin-c-mast-cells-and-inflammation-2155-9600-1000456.php?aid=66895.
Carr, Anitra C., et al. “The Effect of Intravenous Vitamin C on Cancer- and Chemotherapy-Related Fatigue and Quality of Life.” Frontiers in Oncology, vol. 4, 2014, doi:10.3389/fonc.2014.00283.