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Do Air Pollutants Play a Role in Bowel Disease?

Air Pollution

Story at-a-glance -

  • Exposure to air pollution may play role in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, by triggering inflammation, making your gut more permeable and altering its normal balance of bacteria
  • IBD did not emerge until after industrialization, so a strong role for environmental factors appears likely
  • High air emissions of pollutants has been linked to a 40 percent increase in the rate of IBD hospitalizations
  • If you have IBD, you’ll need to focus on suppressing the underlying inflammation; the greatest contributors to chronic inflammation are lifestyle factors such as smoking, a diet high in sugar, fried foods and trans fats, inadequate exercise, stress and vitamin D deficiency

By Dr. Mercola

Air pollution has long been implicated as a cause of heart and lung disease, in part because it triggers inflammation in your body. Now, researchers are beginning to explore its potential role in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

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