Diabetes linked with air pollution

air pollution

There are many diseases that can be acquired from getting exposed to air pollution. Some of the diseases are Leukemia, Pneumonia and many more. Back in 2016, a study got conducted on how it affects diabetes and the results prove it.

The study

For years diabetes has been linked with lifestyle factor, such as diet and sedentary lifestyle, but now research by the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis said pollution also plays a major role.

The study estimated that pollution contributed to 3.2 million new diabetes cases globally in 2016 — or around 14 percent of all new diabetes cases globally that year.

“Our research shows a significant link between air pollution and diabetes globally,” said Ziyad Al-Aly, the study’s senior author.

Pollution is thought to reduce the body’s insulin production, “preventing the body from converting blood glucose into energy that the body needs to maintain health,” according to the research.

Al-Aly said the research, published in the Lancet Planetary Health, found an increased risk even with levels of air pollution currently considered safe by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

“This is important because many industry lobbying groups argue that current levels are too stringent and should be relaxed. Evidence shows that current levels are still not sufficiently safe and need to be tightened,” he added.

‘A strong link’

Researchers working with scientists at the Veterans Affairs’ Clinical Epidemiology Center, examined data from 1.7 million U.S. veterans who did not have histories of diabetes and were followed for a median of 8.5 years.

Patient information from the veterans was compared to air quality information to examine the relationship between pollution and diabetes risk.

The scientists found the risk of developing diabetes “exhibited a strong link to air pollution”.

They then devised a model to gauge diabetes risks over different pollution levels and used data from the annual worldwide Global Burden of Disease study, to estimate the prevalence of diabetes caused by bad air.

Diabetes affects more than 420 million people globally and is one of the world’s fastest growing diseases.

Source: Medium, CTV News