6 Ways the Environment Impacts Your Health
We live every day in the conditions of our environment, but you might not give it much though unless specifically provoked. It is something that you should think about, though, for a number of reasons. Of course, it is important to be conscientious of the impact you are having on the environment, but it’s just as important to consider what impact the environment is having on you. There are many ways it can affect your health, both positively and negatively. Being more aware of this can help you minimize its negative effects and maximize its positive effects.
The environment and its importance should not be taken lightly. Your health should also not be taken lightly. Care for both by learning about how the two are linked and what you can do to invest in both yourself and the environment surrounding you. You’re likely to see the benefits affect your daily life.
Air Quality Affects Lungs
Air quality is one of the greatest environmental factors affecting the health of people. Whether it’s pollution, secondhand smoke or chemical emissions, we breathe in far more than just the oxygen we need. This can cause a host of health problems—especially for anybody who happens to have sensitive lungs. According to Physicians for Social Responsibility, air pollution can be so potent that it contributes to lung diseases such as COPD, emphysema and even lung cancer. It is imperative to minimize pollution as much as possible for the sake of your lungs and your overall health.
Sunlight Improves Your Mood
Did you know that the sun has the power to improve your mood? Perhaps you have noticed—as many people do—that you feel slightly less happy when fall and winter roll around. Indeed, this is often because the sun is less visible, and its anti-depressive power is eschewed. When you are able to soak in sunlight, however, it offers plenty of benefits for your health. The vitamin D you absorb from the sun is great for your body, and sunlight can also boost your immune system, improve your bone health, mitigate asthma symptoms and fight against certain cancers.
Water is Essential for Health
You should drink water every day in order to keep your body healthy and hydrated. Water is often taken for granted, though, and the consequences of this can be critical. In areas where there is a shortage, for example, it can take a serious toll on the environment to source water for the population. This might persuade you to drink less water, when in fact, it is essential to your health and well-being. Initiatives such as the Cadiz Water Project aim to mitigate this problem and keep water accessible for everybody. A healthy community is dependent upon access to water.
Natural Resources Provide Food
The Cadiz Water Project isn’t the only initiative fighting for the land’s natural resources. There are other crises affecting the environment—and in turn, your health—too. We rely on crops, of course, to provide food and nutrients. It can be a serious problem when agriculture is threatened, but that is exactly the situation we are facing. Bees are dying out and many farmers are finding it increasingly difficult to grow crops in infertile lands. With issues like these affecting our food supply, it is a threat to our health, too. Being environmentally conscientious can help mitigate such problems, though.
Pollution Affects Community
Pollution is a major problem facing communities everywhere. Air pollution, of course, can take the form of the aforementioned chemical emissions or simply secondhand smoke. What about water pollution, though? Or land pollution? These are equally as dangerous and deserving of our attention. These problems can affect the health of an entire community if they are not taken care of. Pollution can come from illegal dumping, but it can also come from the cumulative effect of littering. The result could be contaminated water, detriment to local agriculture and ultimately harm to the health of the local population.
Climate Change Poses Danger
Though many cast doubt on the idea of climate change, research supports the idea that the average temperature of the earth is on the rise—and this should be alarming enough to warrant action. You might not consider a few degrees of difference to be directly relevant to your health, but global warming is, in fact, a danger to the well-being of every person in the world.
As temperatures rise, natural resources are affected, and the result could be catastrophic. It is imperative that we fight climate change through deliberate environmental action and investment in the earth.
The environment has a direct impact on your health, so needless to say, you should do everything within your power to take care of it. Your well-being depends on it, and the earth depends on it, too. Do not take the resources of the environment for granted—instead, be conscientious of their relationship to your health.