Air Pollution Linked to Parkinson’s Risk

Air Pollution Linked to Parkinson’s Risk. (Photo via

Diseases from air pollution claim 6.7 million lives annually globally. WHO classified outdoor air pollution as a human carcinogen in 2018, with evidence suggesting it impairs the brain, accelerates cognitive aging, and may induce Parkinson’s.

New York, NY (ADH News) – The global impact of air pollution could be more significant than commonly thought. According to statistics from the WHO, 6.7 million people worldwide die from diseases caused by air pollution every year. Living in areas with excessive air pollution for a long time can lead to non-communicable conditions, including stroke, ischemic heart disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. (COPD) and lung cancer. But did you know that air pollution not only damages the body but also the brain? Current scientists believe that there is a close relationship between air pollution and Parkinson’s disease.

More than 10 million people worldwide have Parkinson’s disease, a chronic disease that affects the central nervous system. There is currently no cure, and it causes involuntary or uncontrollable movements such as tremors, stiffness, and difficulty with balance, which worsens over time and often leads to cognitive decline.

A study by the Barrow Neurological Institute in the United States found that air pollution in the place of residence is positively correlated with the risk of Parkinson’s disease in residents. People living in areas with average air pollution have a higher risk of Parkinson’s disease than air pollution. Areas below average increased by 56%. The study was recently published in Neurology, the American Academy of Neurology’s medical journal.

Research finds the relationship between air pollution and Parkinson’s disease varies by region. The Ohio River Valley, for example, along with central North Dakota, parts of Texas, Kansas, eastern Michigan, and the tip of Florida, has been identified as a high-risk area for Parkinson’s disease.

People living in the western half of the United States have a lower risk of developing Parkinson’s disease compared to the rest of the country. It is speculated that the reason is related to the transmission network. The higher density of road networks means pollution in these areas may contain more combustion particles from traffic and heavy metals from manufacturing, which may be linked to cell death in parts of the brains of people with Parkinson’s disease.

PM2.5 in more than 99% of the earth’s land exceeds health standards, and only 0.001% of the world’s population can breathe air that meets health standards. Scientists believe that 40% to 65% of the risk of Alzheimer’s disease comes from non-genetic factors, such as lifestyle and living environment. In addition to avoiding air pollution, you can wear a mask when going out. After outdoor activities, wash your hands, face, and nasal cavity frequently to reduce the entry of fine suspended particles into the body.

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