Researchers claim that air pollution can dramatically increase the risk of Type 2 diabetes. The study by the research team notes that in 2016, 1 out of 7 disease cases were directly caused by air pollution, which would equal more than 3 million cases.
Air Pollution Associated with Type 2 Diabetes
The study was conducted by researchers from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Washington, St. Louis, Missouri. The scientists note that although obesity was the main link to type 2 diabetes, air pollution was also thought to be the cause of the disease.
Health experts believe that the tiny particles in the air can reduce the body's ability to release the hormone insulin. This process is known as insulin resistance, in which blood glucose levels increase, which can lead to a person developing type 2 diabetes. Researchers studied data from 1
The researchers discovered that the risk of developing type 2 diabetes per 10 micrograms per cubic meter increased by 10 percent increase in fine particulate matter found in the air. The study also found that over 8 million years of healthy living around the world have been lost in 2016 due to pollution-related diabetes.
Health experts are worried
"Our research shows a significant link between air pollution and diabetes worldwide, and we've identified an increased risk, even with low levels of air pollution, which is currently considered safe by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the World Health Organization." Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly of Washington University stated:
Dr. Al-Aly went on to say that the evidence collected shows that current air pollution is still not considered safe and needs to be tightened. Researchers also noted that their findings are worrying as many areas of the UK experience very high levels of air pollution that violate safety standards.
The World Health Organization also reported data that 30 cities have a high particulate matter content, which is above the recommended limit of 10 micrograms per cubic meter.
More than 3 million people in the UK have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Researchers also noted that poverty-stricken countries such as Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea and Guyana are at a higher risk of environmental diabetes, while richer countries, including Finland and France, are at lower risk.
The study was published in the journal The Lancet Planetary Health .
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