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Climate change is making the summer hotter and less healthy

Red hot earth
Red hot earth

Climate change is for real and has been making the summer hotter and not as healthy. Summer is actually changing for the worse because of climate change reported MedPage Today on July 5, 2014. The increasingly high temperatures over the summer from climate change has the potential to seriously undermine the health of people.

Pete Altman of the New York City based Natural Resources Defense Council says that climate change has been super-charging our summers. This has led to the worsening of many conditions dealing with such things as heat waves, biting insects, pollen, and poor air quality. Altman points out that because of the hotter summers we are experiencing more risks to our health, and our happiness, and our basic enjoyment of the summer.

Altman and others have been saying it is important to lower carbon emissions, particularly from power plants, which it is claimed are playing a significant role in changing the world's climate. Kim Knowlton, DrPH, the senior scientist of the Natural Resources Defense Council, says that limiting climate change is actually all about protecting public health.

Although control of pollution is significant for the future, the Natural Resources Defense Council has a tip sheet to assist people in coping with changes in summer this year. Among these tips it's important to remember to slow down in the heat, stay hydrated, and never leave kids and pets in unattended parked cars.

During times of bad air quality it is suggested to take more breaks and not to do as many intense activities. People suffering from asthma should keep quick relief medicine with them. It is also important to check for ticks after spending time outside, particularly in wooded or grassy areas. It should also be remembered to keep perishable food refrigerated.

It has been suggested by a recent paper in Nature that the nutritional quality of food is degraded by increased carbon dioxide. This causes the food to become starchier, with fewer micronutrients and not as much protein. It has been observed that dietary deficiencies of zinc and iron are a significant global public health problem. About two billion people suffer these deficiencies.

The majority of these people depend on grains and legumes as their primary dietary source of zinc and iron. Researchers have found grains and legumes have lower concentrations of zinc and iron when they are grown under field conditions at the elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations which are associated with global warming. The deleterious effects on food by global warming opens up new vital concerns in dealing with people potentially suffering from malnutrition due to global warming.

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