What does traffic pollution have to do with cognitive health?

Hearty Team
Feb 13, 2023

Have you ever wondered how pollution could be impacting your health? New research suggests that traffic pollution may negatively impact brain function. 

Study Summary 

This new research, which included 25 healthy adults, found that: 

  • It only takes 2 hours for levels of traffic pollution, commonly found, to reduce brain function. 
  • Reduced functionality in the area of the brain impacted by pollution has been associated with reduced cognitive performance and increased symptoms of depression. 

This study is limited by small sample size.

The Hearty Take 

This research suggests that pollution may impact your ability to think clearly or work effectively. There is a need for more research to better understand the impact of pollution on brain function. In the meantime, it doesn’t hurt to reduce your exposure to air pollution by rolling up your car windows, ensuring your car has a great air filtration system, or taking a less busy route (especially if you are biking or walking).

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