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Air pollution is so bad in China, it's turning womens' facial skin BLACK

Air pollution
(NaturalNews) It's a well-known fact that air pollution is a major problem in China – millions of Chinese citizens die each year from pollution-related health problems – but respiratory ailments are not the only problems caused by the unrelenting smog.

A recent report revealed that air pollution in China and Germany (the countries where the large-scale research study was performed) is also responsible for the formation of lentigines – dark areas of skin also called "liver spots."

Head researcher Jean Krutmann, MD, of the IUF–Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in Dusseldorf, said:

In addition to particulate matter, traffic-related air pollution is characterized by increased concentration of nitrogen dioxide (NO2). While NO2 exposure is known to be associated with low lung function and lung cancer, the effect of NO2 on human skin has never been investigated. This is important because environmentally-induced lung and skin aging appear to be closely related.

The study involved 806 Caucasian German women and 743 Han Chinese women from the Taizhou region. The exposure to NO2 among these two groups was found to cause the formation lentigines on the facial area.

From AlphaGalileo.org:

No association was seen between levels of NO2 and [lentigines'] formation on the back of the hands or forearms, however, exposure to NO2 was significantly associated with more [lentigines] on the cheeks in both German and Chinese women older than 50 years. Overall, an increase of 10 µg/m3 in NO2 concentration was associated with approximately 25% more dark spots.

It's not particularly surprising to learn that heavy air pollution causes skin problems as well as respiratory ailments, particularly in countries such as China where the air quality is extremely poor in many cities.

5.5 million yearly air pollution-related deaths globally

Of the 5.5 million people across the globe who die each year from air pollution, more than 3 million live in either China or India. China alone counts for 1.5 million of these deaths annually.

From The Christian Science Monitor:

In the face of these troubling figures, China and India have both taken on new initiatives to address their air quality and decrease the millions of premature deaths each year. And the urgent action demanded by these large death tolls can speed up larger environmental protection efforts, say scientists.

Of course, China is notorious for pledging to clean up emissions and then failing to do so, which means the problem isn't likely to go away anytime soon.

But air pollution isn't just a problem limited to India and China. According to the American Lung Association, more than half of Americans breathe air dirty enough to cause health problems, and presumably the skin problems now associated with air pollution will affect some Americans as well.

Protecting your skin from air pollution

Dr. Krutmann has some tips for protecting your skin from air pollution:

If you regularly clean your face, it's very likely that you reduce the load of pollution on your skin, and thus you have less of a problem, and this is what we have also recommended.The other thing is, if you have a good skin barrier, it's much more difficult for the pollutants to penetrate.

From MedicalNewsToday.com:

Dr. Krutmann explained to MNT that particulate matter contains carbon particles, which are covered on the surface by what we call polyaromatic hydrocarbons. These polyaromatic hydrocarbons, he said, are lipophilic, which means they can dissolve in oil. This enables them to penetrate through the outer layer of the skin to reach viable skin cells.

The hydrocarbons can activate these cells, he continued, through the function of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) causing oxidative stress.

He added that skin products with specific antioxidants "may offer some protection" and predicts that such products may soon be available.





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