Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: In the backdrop of high levels of air pollution caused by Diwali firecrackers, residents of New Delhi have been advised to remain indoors, with special cautions for the children, elderly and those with health problems.
As the levels of air pollution in the national capital went up to alarmingly high levels amid Diwali celebrations, those with pre-existing respiratory issues have been advised to stay away from the city. However, if you can't go out of the city, here are a few tips to help you stay fit and reduce your risk of getting respiratory diseases. Taking necessary steps is important as polluted air can trigger a number of symptoms, especially for people with chronic health conditions such as asthma, bronchitis and heart disease.
- Check daily the Air Quality Index (AQI) for your area and restrict the time outdoors when the pollution level is high.
- Avoid going to polluted areas or reduce your exposure to pollutants by staying indoors during peak traffic times.
- Avoid rigorous activity or heavier breathing when the air quality is unhealthy to prevent inhaling more pollutants.
- If you do have to be outdoors, try to do during the early morning or after the sun sets.
- In case you live near a busy road, keep your windows and doors closed during peak hours. Also buy an air purifier.
- Those pre-disposed to respiratory health conditions should preferably remain indoors until the pollution level reduces significantly and thsy must take good care of themselves.
- People suffering from diabetes should keep their blood sugar in check as they are vulnerable to respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.
- Maintain a healthy weight as a healthy lifestyle can certainly help you stay fit and avoid health problems.
- Young children need extra attention to avoid dire consequences as their lungs are still developing; their respiratory airways are more prone to blockages; they breathe twice as fast, taking in more air per unit of body weight, compared to adults.
- Try to eat a balanced diet containing plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains as good nutrition can help the body resist infection.
- Drink plenty of fluids or water to keep your respiratory tract moist.
Air pollution is a major environmental health problem affecting the developing and the developed countries alike. It is also a major contributing factor in the deaths of around 600,000 children under five every year, as per the UNICEF.