Tips to stay healthy during smog


For New Delhi residents, it’s that time of the year again when they dread going out. The ‘smoggy’ winters are once again here. Even indoors are not safe to breathe. Because the air gets so toxic, it hampers the daily routine. Especially harmful for kids, elderly, pregnant women and people with breathing issues, there is no escape from the toxicity as it pervades through the environment and envelopes the entire city and adjacent areas.

Smog is formed when the Ozone gas from the upper part of the atmosphere descends towards the earth and clashes either with the climactic condition of an area, or with high pollution levels. Pollution levels increase exponentially this time of the year due to the stubble burning in agricultural parts of Punjab and Haryana.

However, in months when smog is at its worst, here are some ways you can keep yourself and your family protected:

Eat the right food

Foods that are rich in antioxidants can help you ward off the ill effects of smog. These foods neutralize the free radicals that are released in your body due to constant exposure to smog. Here is a list of foods that are ideal for you if you live in a place with excessive smog:

  • Vitamin C: This is one of the most potent antioxidants. It dissolves in water and can be carried to various parts of the body to get rid of free radicles. Citrus fruits are the best sources of vitamin C. Adults should aim to get at least 40mg of Vitamin C to combat smog.
  • Vitamin E: It protects your body from any damage caused to the tissues. Vitamin E is found in most plant based oils, nuts like almond, fish and herbs like oregano, basil and parsley. You may even consume supplements to help you.
  • Beta Carotene: This compound is converted into Vitamin A in the body. It reduces inflammation and is a great antioxidant. The best sources are carrots and green leafy vegetables.
  • Omega 3 fatty acids: Heart health is managed when you have a good source of Omega 3 in your diet. This reduces the effects of air pollution on your body. Nuts, fish and green leafy vegetables are the best sources.
  • Magnesium rich food sources such as cashews, pumpkin seeds, black beans, and spinach must be included in the diet immediately.
  • You could add turmeric to your food, milk, or coffee to keep your immunity levels high.
  • According to Ayurveda, ginger, tulsi, black pepper, mint, milk and wheat are extremely beneficial in helping those who suffer from asthma.
  • Try having warm water with honey and tulsi extract.
  • You can also try to have few drops of ginger juice with honey and black pepper two times a day.
  • Make saunf and jaggery chikki using a little ghee for kids to suck on. It helps relieve allergic cough.

Exercising in smog  

Following a good workout routine when the air you breathe is very polluted can be hard. You cannot perform to your full potential. If you want to stay healthy despite the fog, here are a few tips that will come handy:

  • Do not workout outdoors when smog level is very high
  • Make sure you check air quality index each day.
  • Do not exercise in places close to busy roads and in open parks.
  • Stay clear from second hand smoking or products with aerosol to prevent the effects of indoor air pollution.
  • Avoid going for morning and late evening walks.
  • Practice yoga regularly. The focus on breathing is very high in yoga, keeping your lungs healthier. Try out breathing exercises such as breathing in through one nostril while keeping the other closed. Then close that nostril and exhale through the other.

Other tips

  • Make sure that your house has several plants.
  • Do saline gargling before going to bed.
  • Have warm water throughout the day.
  • Do not smoke indoors.
  • Try to use commuting options such as public transport instead of your own vehicle. That way, you do not contribute to this pollution.
  • Use a dehumidifier, air purifier, or an air conditioner in your house.
  • Avoid carpeting as it traps several toxins.
  • Keep your home clear of aerosol products.
  • Make sure you stay indoors when the smog is too high on a given day.
  • Do not step outdoors without a mask.

Information courtesy : https://www.98fit.com/blog/tips-to-stay-healthy-during-this-harmful-smog/