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The typical concentration of oxygen in the blood of a human hovers around 96%, and whenever that percentage drops significantly, serious physical manifestations can occur. Some common symptoms of oxygen deficiency include digestive difficulty, memory loss, excess stomach acid, poor circulation, light headedness, muscular pain and fatigue.
Anyone experiencing symptoms such as those listed above should consult with a physician as soon as possible, because only a doctor has the ability to assess how severe an occurrence of oxygen deficiency truly is. It is also likely that a medical professional will work to determine the reason for the deficiency in order to get the situation under control.
For more information view our “Why We Become Oxygen Deficient” slideshow.
Oxygen deficiency can result from a whole host of triggers. Heart and lung disease are among the most common causes of this type of problem, though excessive consumption of alcohol and cigarette smoking are also key contributors in many instances. Less common, but still quite serious is the oxygen deficiency that can result from being present in high altitude locations.
Often overlooked, however, are what should be the most obvious reasons for oxygen deficiency, namely the quality of food eaten and the quality of the air breathed on a daily basis. Because of air pollution and increased industrialization, the available amount of oxygen in the environment has decreased in recent decades. Oxygen levels during prehistoric times have been shown to have registered at around 38%. Scientists have estimated pre-Industrial Revolution oxygen levels to have been in the area of 32%. The turn of the twentieth century saw oxygen levels fall further to roughly 24%. Nowadays, the estimate of oxygen in the air is somewhere between 19 and 21%, though the true number could be lower in highly populated, industrialized areas.
It is important to note that human life is unsustainable at oxygen levels beneath 7%. Sadly, such a circumstance is entirely possible if the destruction of global oxygen sources like rain forests and ocean plankton fields continues unabated. There is no denying the fact that humans need oxygen. That is the plain and simple truth. However, the act of breathing ambient air alone may not be sufficient to perpetuate human life over the long term. Though many people may be unaware of the serious threat to perpetual existence that humans are facing, it is possible to generate increased awareness through education.
Dietary choices also play a substantial role in the ever-decreasing availability of oxygen in the blood of countless individuals. Though they may be tasty and convenient, highly processed food items are known for containing significant amounts of sugar and saturated fat. Further, they contain insufficient amounts of critical enzymes, water, fiber and oxygen. Thus, it is extremely important for people to pay close attention to their diet in order to remain conscientious about maintaining adequate oxygen supply.
Robert October 27th, 2013
Posted In: Oxygen Deficiency
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