Traffic causes heart attacks
Being stuck in traffic could substantially raise your chances of having a heart attack — and it’s not just the stress. The particulate pollution that hovers over traffic is the likely culprit, says a new study in the New England Journal of Medicine, though “we can’t exclude that there is an interaction between stress and pollution,” says lead author Annette Peters. And before you greenies start feeling smug, note that it doesn’t matter whether you’re in a car, aboard public transportation, or riding a bike; as long as you’re breathing the stuff, you’re at risk. So, although the researchers do recommend reducing stress — for instance, remembering that the jackass jabbering on his cell phone while cutting you off will reap his due karmic punishment — they acknowledge that the only real way to meliorate the problem is an overall reduction in air pollution.