Looks like all that water weight might actually be from the air.

A new study suggests that long-term air pollution exposure is linked to women gaining weight — particularly ladies in their late 40s and 50s, EurekAlert reported.

Observed women who were exposed to poor air quality, specifically higher levels of fine particles, such as nitrogen dioxide and ozone, had seen increases in their body size, according to study author Xin Wang, epidemiology research investigator at the University of Michigan.

The exposure to air pollution was tied to higher body fat, fat proportion, and lower lean mass for middle-aged women. EurekaAlert noted that “body fat increased by 4.5%, or about 2.6 pounds.”

The data came from a mix of 1,654 white, black, Chinese, and Japanese women whose median age was 50. They had been tracked for eight years from 2000 to 2008.

A new study suggests that air pollution is linked to women gaining weight.
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Air pollution is a factor in women gaining weight according to new research.
Air pollution is a factor in women gaining weight, new research suggests.
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Their residential addresses were used to measure the relative air pollution surrounding their homes as well, looking for connections between the two entities.

However, exercise and physical activity acted as a deterrent to the effects in these findings, according to the outlet.

Wang also said that because the study had focused solely on middle-aged women, these findings can’t be generalized to younger — or older — women or men.

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