Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

Women's Health

Poor Air Quality’s Impact on Your Health

Learn about air quality index values and protect your skeleton from oxidative stress.

Get full access to Outside Learn, our online education hub featuring in-depth fitness and nutrition courses and more than 2,000 instructional videos when you sign up for Outside+.

You may have heard mention of the air quality index during the weather report, usually in relation to outdoor activity — and next time make sure you pay attention.

A recent study published in JAMA Network Open revealed that air pollution was associated with low bone-mineral density, low bone mass and reduced bone-mineral content. Inhaling polluted air causes oxidative stress and inflammation, both of which are associated with bone demineralization and osteoporosis. When air quality is unhealthy, move your exercise inside or train early in the morning or later at night when traffic and pollution are lowest.

Air Quality Index (AQI Values) Levels of Health Concern
0 to 50 Good
51 to 100 Moderate
101 to 150 Unhealthy for sensitive groups
151 to 200 Unhealthy
201 to 300 Very Unhealthy
301 to 500 Hazardous