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The Evidence Is Strong: Air Pollution Seems to Cause Dementia

Air pollution is much worse for health than people had thought, increasing the risk of Alzheimer’s significantly. Meanwhile, air quality is getting worse. 

A 2017 study published in The Lancet followed all adults living in Ontario (roughly 6.5 million people) for over a decade and found that those who lived closer to major high-traffic roads were significantly more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease across the study period, regardless of their health at baseline or socioeconomic status. Both of these studies estimated that around 6 to 7 percent of all dementia cases in their samples could be attributed to air pollution exposures.

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