Air pollution not only affects the lungs, but causes damage to all organs and increases the incidence of diseases such as diabetes, dementia, cancer, osteoporosis, fertility problems and in children, among other conditions, according to specialists.
Recent research has warned that pollutants in the environment cause inflammation which then spreads throughout the body, besides ultrafine particles are transported throughout the body through the bloodstream.
"Air pollution can cause severe and chronic damage, which can potentially affect all organs of the body," the International Respiratory Forum, as quoted by the British newspaper The Guardian.
The study conducted by the Forum added "to the great evidence we have, there are more than 70,000 scientific articles that show that air pollution affects our health," Dr. Maria Neira, director of public health and the environment. World Health Organization (WHO).
Air pollution is a "public health emergency", with more than 90 percent of the world's population breathing toxic air, the WHO warns.
However, because the effects of different pollutants on various conditions have not been established, it is thought that damage to the heart and lungs will only be "the tip of the iceberg," reports The Guardian.
According to Professor Dean Schraufnagel, of the University of Illinois in Chicago and who is leading the study at the International Respiratory Society Forum, the main cause of widespread damage caused by air pollution is "systemic inflammation."
"Immune cells can believe that (contaminated particles) are bacteria, then they chase them and try to kill them by releasing enzymes and acids," explained the specialist.
"These inflammatory proteins spread throughout the body, affecting the brain, kidneys, pancreas, etc. In evolutionary terms, the body has evolved to defend itself against infection, not contamination," he added.
As a result, pollution can cause, in addition to respiratory and heart disease, various conditions such as stroke, dementia, various types of cancer, skin and bone problems, infertility, and damage to the fetus and children in general. .