Air Pollution Not So Bad After All: It's the City Life for Me

Sasha Brown-Worsham

pollution in Beijing
A recent study from the University of Buffalo shows that exposure to carbon monoxide and fine particles in the air during pregnancy doesn't appear to increase the risk of preterm delivery or preeclampsia.

Preeclampsia is a condition in which high blood pressure and protein in the urine start to develop late in the second trimester. The symptoms include swelling of the hands, face, or eyes, and sudden weight gain. It can be dangerous -- and even deadly -- for the mother.

So, while I'm not taking this study to advocate a move to Mexico City (where pollution runs rampant), I'll still take it as a positive development, especially for a city dweller like me.

It seems like so many things are dangerous for mothers-to-be, it's nice to know that something may not be, even if that something is a pretty bad thing anyway. 

According to Medical News Today: "The research was conducted in the region around Seattle, Washington, using data from 3,675 women who were enrolled in the Omega Study, an investigation of the effects of diet and environment on women's health and nutrition before and during pregnancy."

I have to admit, as a city mama (albeit a pretty healthy city in general), I was thrilled with this information. I feel like from the day most of us city mamas get knocked up, all everyone asks us about is when we plan to move to the burbs.

For me? Possibly never.

I like the city. I love the diversity and the fact that I can walk (or bike) everywhere I want to go. I love that there's always something going on and that there are three parks within a couple blocks of our house where I hear at least five languages each time we go. People say cities and babies don't mix, but I think it's the opposite.

So, three cheers to this study!

Now, I'm just waiting for the study that tells me living in a "neighborhood in transition" increases the chances my baby will be a genius and I'll embrace city living for all time.

Are you a city person?


Image via David Barrie/Flickr

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