Should you be worried about breathing dirty air?
Air quality is a concern for everyone. Exercising outdoors in some area may put people at a greater risk for complications from exposure to ozone and smoke filled air than for those who do not. Ozone is pollution formed from the emissions of cars and trucks, wood burning stoves, chemical or industrial plants and refineries. These pollutants have a chemical reaction to heat and sunlight. Exposure to ozone can irritate the respiratory system and aggravate asthma.
If you suspect the air quality is unhealthy take precautions. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has produced an Air Quality Index (AQI) to make it easy to understand the current air quality conditions. The index has a range from 0-500; the higher the value, the higher the level of air pollution in the atmosphere.
Find out the AQI in your city by listening to local forecasts or by logging onto the United States Environmental Protection Agency site. The web address is: http://www.epa.gov.
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