Air pollution reduces life expectancy by two years

Researchers are sounding the Alarm: According to the latest findings, the health hazards caused by air pollution in Europe, twice as large as previously thought. A current reassessment of the health risks showed an unexpectedly high mortality rate due to contaminated air. Germany takes even the sad leadership in Europe. According to the study, more people die now by air pollutants than the Smoking.

A German research team from the Max-Planck-Institute for chemistry, rated recently the health risks of air pollutants on the basis of the latest data base. This showed that the risks associated with pollutants of air, are much greater than previously thought. According to the new study, every year, about 124,000 people die in Germany alone to the following of the pollute air more than the smoke. Thus, the air pollution is included in the list of the most common causes of death. The results of the study were recently published in the “European Heart Journal”.

Germany has the most harmful air in Europe

“Air pollution is underestimated as a health hazard, even if there is currently a heated debate about nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, and diesel driving bans,” writes the Max-Planck Team. The currently prevailing air pollution, lowering the average life expectancy of Europeans by about two years. Of Europe than the global average. According to the latest calculations, 133 people per 100,000 inhabitants in Europe die prematurely from the consequences of polluted air – in Germany there are even 154 people. The global average of 120 deaths per 100,000 people. Each year approximately 8.8 million deaths, therefore, are the consequences of air pollution.

Why does air pollution to premature death?

As the researchers report, favoured with fine-particle air airway – loaded, and heart disease. Fine dust particles with a diameter smaller than 2.5 microns can be inhaled and become lodged either in the bronchi or the alveoli into the bloodstream. “Our results show that the European limit value for fine dust, for an annual average of 25 micrograms per cubic meter of air, is much too high,” says Thomas Münzel from the study team, who is also the Director of the centre for cardiology of the University medical center Mainz. In the Directive of the world health organization, WHO, a score of less than 10 micro-it is recommended to grams per cubic meter as a guideline.

Air pollutants are calling for more Deaths than tobacco smoke

“Air pollution needs to be recognised as a major cardiovascular risk factor, because it gives the body extra damage due to Diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol values,” calls Münzel in a press release of the study results. According to the revaluation of bad air, thus joins the list of the most important health risks such as high blood pressure, Diabetes, Obesity, and Smoking. The WHO estimates the annual deaths from tobacco Smoking (including passive Smoking) to 7.2 million people annually – 1.6 million less than through air pollution. Consequently, air contaminated outdoor a similar risk factor such as Smoking.

Fine dust as a cause for heart diseases underestimated

“Fine dust diseases be brought as a cause of cardiovascular more in the guidelines of the European society of cardiology in the foreground,” says the cardiologist. The largest source of particulate pollution is the burning of fossil fuels. The researchers therefore call for the replacement of fossil fuels for energy production. (vb)