Air pollution is particularly hazardous for children and those children who live in areas with high levels of air pollutants in the air are more susceptible to variety of different diseases with one of them also being the diabetes 2.
This has been confirmed by the German scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum München who have concluded that the children that are growing up in areas where air pollution is increased are more susceptible to the risk of insulin resistance (the precursor to diabetes).
This is due to the oxidative stress caused by exposure to air pollutants leading to the development of insulin resistance. Furthermore the long term exposure to particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide can also lead to increased insulin resistance.
This study showed that insulin resistance levels tended to increase with increasing air pollution exposure and that the levels of insulin resistance were greater in children that were more exposed to air pollution. Also, the proximity to the nearest major road increased insulin resistance by 7% per 500 meters showing yet another negative health effect of traffic-related air pollution.
What this study undoubtedly shows is that being exposed to long-term air pollution as a child significantly increases the risk for the development of diabetes in adults. On the broader scale of things this study is just one in the series of the studies showing that clean air is one of the major prerequisites to healthy life.
Air pollution is therefore not only major environmental issue, it is also a very important health issue. What this means is that our entire society should care more greatly about the degrading air quality in many areas of the world.