Air pollution has emerged as the fourth leading risk factor for deaths worldwide. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has named air pollution as the world’s largest environmental hazard.Latest WHO report also suggests that 92% of world’s population lives in places where air quality levels exceed WHO limits. Around 7 million people worldwide die prematurely as a result of exposure to air pollution, say WHO.

Air pollution has been linked to a number of serious health problems, including cardiovascular diseases, stroke, chronic respiratory diseases and cancers.While governments across the world are taking steps to cut down on air pollution, we can also take some simple steps to protect ourselves from unhealthy air. Here are a few tips to protect yourself and your family from air pollution:

Make efforts to use less energy in your home as generating electricity and other sources of energy create air pollution.
Install air filters in your house if you’re living in an area with high levels of air pollution.
Do not burn wood or trash as it can increase outdoor pollutant concentrations.
Restrict anyone to smoke indoors and discourage the practice of smoking at public places as well.
While outdoors, use a face mask such as an N95, which is a respiratory protective device designed for filtering out airborne particles, particularly when pollution peaks in the city.
Avoid exercising outdoors near high-traffic areas to avoid inhaling polluted air.Eat fruits and vegetables that are rich in antioxidants and have the capacity to lessen the effects of air pollution. Food items like berries, tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, apples, green tea, cinnamon, pomegranate, and citrus fruits like oranges are packed with antioxidants.
Stay tuned to air pollution forecasts in your area using various apps and websites, besides following weather reports on TV, radio and newspapers.