by Gretchen Lidicker, Associate Health Editor-www.mindbodygreen.com
Ever feel like health news is too overwhelming, fast-paced, or hard to decipher? Us too. Here, we filter through the latest in integrative health, wellness trends, and nutrition advice, reporting on the most exciting and meaningful breakthroughs. We’ll tell you exactly what you need to know—and how it might help you become a healthier and happier human.
According to a new report published by the Lancet Commission on Health and Pollution, about one in six deaths is related to pollution of some kind. This means air pollution, water and soil contamination, or chemical and occupational pollution, which together represent the world’s largest environmental cause of disease. In fact, studies estimate that these pollutions were responsible for 9 million premature deaths in 2015 alone. These numbers are pretty staggering, and according to the report, our governments and health care systems have ignored them for far too long.
If you’re wondering what kind of pollution is the biggest threat to your health, the report also answers that question. Air pollution is the worst and has been linked to 6.5 million fatalities in 2015. The next is water (at 1.8 million) and third is workplace-related (0.8 million). The pollution problem affects everyone, but especially children, communities in middle- or low-income areas, and quickly industrializing countries in Africa and Asia.
The bottom line? There are a lot of chemicals out there and most of them haven’t been studied nearly enough. In other words: Living a green lifestyle—by investing in items like all-natural beauty products and household cleaners, getting out in nature, and eating lots of fruits and veggies that are packed with antioxidants—has never been more important. So stock up on those nontoxic, clean-burning candles and check your city’s air-quality index daily. There’s a lot we can’t control about the pollution in our air, water, and soil, but we can arm ourselves with knowledge and do everything we can to decrease our exposure to toxins every single day.