Smoke: Dangerous to Runners

Posted: October 24, 2007 in marathon, marathon running

Running on roads has many risk, one risk is inhaling the smoke, fumes from the passing cars. At times when am running and a car zooms past me, the fumes left in the atmosphere have left me with stomach cramps.

Dangers of smoke/fumes

We know that fumes in the air have always been a risk for the lungs, setting off respiratory illness like asthma. Researchers from Scotland now report that the heavily contaminated air in urban areas could also be hazardous to the heart.

In a report published on Dr. Nicholas Mills of the University of Edinburgh, the Scottish team found that during exercise, runners who inhaled diesel increased the stress on their hearts by three times, compared with runners who exercised in cleaner air.

Doctors advice

So, is running on roads a bad thing? a fear of city smog shouldn’t keep you from working out. “People should exercise where and when they can,” advises Dr. Nicholas. “If your only choice is exercising in a setting that is not perfectly protected from air quality, then you will probably get more benefit from exercise than risk.”

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