The World Health Organisation has listed Delhi under the worst places in the world due to its high pollution levels. Exposure to smog can be severely harmful for our health in several ways. It can cause/aggravate allergies, asthma, COPD and bronchitis. Apart from the respiratory health, smog is equally harmful for the cardiovascular health as well. It can lead to heart diseases and cause premature birth. Also, you will be shocked to know studies have linked air pollution even with mental illnesses like depression.

Who all are more vulnerable:

*Kids and elderly

*Anyone with respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases, allergic complaints

*Anyone who stays out on roads for long hours, even if sitting in cars!!

AT HOME

We need to follow these measures to ensure better health:

• Minimise use of indoor pollutants. Products which have high perfumes such as deos, cleaners, sprays, incense sticks etc should be stopped completely

• Keep your doors and windows closed specially for morning and evening hours. They should be specifically opened with sunlight

• Keep indoor plants which help in cleaning air around

• Use activated charcoal packs, easily available at online sites for cleaner air inside

• Air purifier may be used specially for sensitive age groups and patients

WHEN MOVING OUT

• Avoid going out when it's cold outside, i.e early morning and evening hours as pollutants are closer to earth surface

• Use masks with respirators marked N95/N99/FFP3 only

• Avoid areas with heavy traffic movement DIET

• Keep hydrated. Take water infused with herbs like tulsi

• Take overnight soaked nuts and seeds, amla, lemon, guava, orange for Vitamin C, E and Omega 3 rich diet and a boost to our system

• Avoid junk food, oily, cold, excess of sugar and salt

• Take lots of fruits and salads. Kiwi, pineapple, onion etc. act as natural antiallergics

• Eat more of jaggery. It can be mixed with ajwain or saunf post meals

• Take turmeric milk at the end of the day

GENERAL

• Be aware of air quality index of your are area. You may decide your outdoor activity accordingly

• Plant air cleaning trees such as neem, peepal, champa, jamun, deodar etc. Wash plants often so that leaves are clean of dust and clean air effectively