Science

Experiencing Smog Causes Serious Body Loss and Long-Term Stress

Extremely polluted air may trigger not only lung and heart disease and even obesity. U.S. researchers in tests have demonstrated that rats. The animals that were exposed to the smog, were significantly thicker than those in a comparison group within a few weeks. And the Rat Genome is similar to the genetic make-up of humans to 90%.Who is obese, ill more often diabetes than slim people. This link between obesity and a number of lifestyle related diseases is already known. And a truism is that lack of exercise, for example, favors the overweight. But obesity by dirty air? If the results of American researchers from Duke University in Durham to humans can be transferred, it must be said: Yes, very far.

Males were still fatter than females

The scientists disabled rats for weeks in a Chamber filled with dirty air, comparable with a smog situation in a big city. Meanwhile, a comparison group lived in a Chamber with clean air. After eight weeks showed up: the female rats in the smog Chamber were ten per cent, the male climbed 18% fatter than those in the other.

The rats in the smog may have eaten more or moves less and were therefore thicker? Project manager says no, Junfeng Zhang, who rather proceeds from a direct impact of air pollution on the metabolism in the rat body. In addition, both groups received exactly same diet during the test phase.

Experiencing Smog Causes Serious Body Loss and Long-Term Stress
The rat is a popular laboratory animal in medical research. Their genome is similar to the our genetic make-up ( 90%). Photo: Ronald Wittek

“Our results demonstrate clearly that long-term stress increases the risk of obesity with dirty air”, says Zhang, Professor of environmental health research. And if these results transmitted to humans, this would mean the reduction of air pollution in the world was “more urgent” than previously thought.

Theme smog experienced Renaissance

So far, such connection was not demonstrated in humans. In the recent past the theme smog rally but more awareness, especially through the sometimes dramatic air values in cities such as Beijing. But also in many German cities, air pollution is still a problem, mainly due to fine dust.

The U.S. researchers now also discovered that blood levels of rats in the smog Chamber deteriorated significantly. So the cholesterol had eight weeks almost doubled, the insulin resistance was also increased after three weeks an early warning signs of type 2 diabetes. In addition, there were measurable inflammation in the liver and lung.