Smog — can you eliminate its detrimental impact through a proper diet ?

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We can lower the detrimental impact of the polluted air through proper nutrition. Constant exposure on the polluted air leads to serious health issues such as respiratory illnesses, added stress to lungs and heart, faster aging of lungs, development of asthma or cancer. The most endangered groups are children, older people and pregnant women. Find out what to eat to lower the negative impact of the polluted air on your body.

Air pollution is one of the factors that increases the production of free radicals (oxidants, reactive forms of oxygen). When oxygen particles divide themselves into singular atoms they become unstable and start seeking for atoms they can join. The process is called the oxidative stress. It’s when the production of free radicals is raised. It makes your body age faster and causes diseases. In order to keep your body function normally you need to balance the increased number of free radicals. It’s done with the help of antioxidants (they inhibit oxidation) which you can find for instance in food.

We have very limited influence on the quality of air that we breathe but for sure we have lots of influence on our nutrition choices.

Examples of antioxidants:

  • Beta-carotene (a dye, it transforms into Vitamin A)
  • Lycopene (a red dye)
  • Selenium
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E

Vegetables, fruits and spices are a great source of antioxidants. Check out the comparison below to find out which products have the most amount of each antioxidant. The order of the products is not random. First product has the most amount while the last will have the least.

ANTIOXIDANTS — PRODUCTS

➡️ Beta-carotene: paprika, cayenne pepper, chili powder, cooked sweet potatoes, cooked carrots, cooked kale, canned pumpkin, cooked spinach, parsley, dried coriander, basil, beet

➡️ Lycopene: sun-dried tomatoes, pasta sauce, ketchup, guavas, barbecue sauce, watermelon, cooked tomatoes, papaya, pink grapefruit

➡️ Selenium: brazil nuts, dried eggs, cooked oysters, tuna, cooked mussels, dry roasted sunflower seeds, canned anchovies, pickled herring, chia seeds, pan-fried bacon, cooked shrimps, curry

➡️ Vitamin A: cod liver oil, paprika, cayenne pepper, chili, dried goji berries, cooked sweet potatoes, cooked carrots, canned pumpkin, spinach, romaine lettuce, parsley, dill, dried coriander, chives, peppermint, cress, arugula, apricot, leek, cooked broccoli

➡️ Vitamin C: dried coriander, guavas, sweet yellow peppers, dried litchis, black currants, fresh thyme, parsley, kale, kiwifruit, broccoli, brussels, bitter melon, pomelo, papaya, strawberries, red cabbage, orange, lemon, cauliflower, pineapple, peas, mango

➡️ Vitamin E: wheat germ oil, hazelnut oil, almond oil, chili powder, cayenne pepper, paprika, grapeseed oil, dry roasted sunflower seeds, almonds, curry, canola oil, olive oil, dried basil, dried parsley, green olives

Some of the products (like paprika, cayenne pepper, chili, sweet potatoes, carrots, kale, pepper, broccoli) appear more than once and are relatively easy to introduce in an everyday diet. Let make our diet rich in health-promoting food that have positive impact on our body.

More and more researches provide evidence that diet rich in antioxidants lowers the detrimental impact of the air pollution.

We have very limited influence on the quality of air that we breathe but for sure we have lots of influence on our nutrition choices. More and more researches provide evidence that diet rich in antioxidants lowers the detrimental impact of the air pollution. Choose food that give you health benefits instead of food that causes diseases and premature aging.

Sources:

🔗 build resistance against ill effects of air pollution

🔗 antioxidants

🔗 overall health effects of air pollution

🔗 how do free radicals affect the body?

🔗 nutrient ranking tool

🔗 pollution and respiratory disease: can diet or supplements help ?