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Smog hides London landmarks as pollution levels rise

Famous London landmarks such as the BT Tower and Canary Wharf were hidden by smog this morning as pollution levels caused problems.

The BT Tower can just be seen amid the London smog.
The BT Tower can just be seen amid the London smog. Credit: ITV News
A grey start to the day at London's Tower Bridge.
A grey start to the day at London's Tower Bridge. Credit: ITV News
The towers of Canary Wharf can just be made out in the background.
The towers of Canary Wharf can just be made out in the background. Credit: ITV News

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People with health problems 'should reduce exertion'

People with health problems should reduce strenuous outdoors exertion in light of high pollution levels in London, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs have warned.

Advice on the Defra's website says:

Adults and children with lung problems, and adults with heart problems, should reduce strenuous physical exertion, particularly outdoors, and particularly if they experience symptoms.

People with asthma may find they need to use their reliever inhaler more often. Older people should also reduce physical exertion.

Anyone experiencing discomfort such as sore eyes, cough or sore throat should consider reducing activity, particularly outdoors.

Read: Health warnings as high levels of pollution spread

Health warnings as high levels of pollution spread

Health warnings have been issued as "high" levels of pollution spread across southern England.

Southern parts of England are experiencing high levels of pollution. Credit: Met Office

Large parts of southern England have "high" levels of pollution, with some parts "very high", this morning's forecast said.

The increased pollution levels have been caused by a combination of light south-easterly winds, the continental air flow and dust which has blown up from the Sahara desert.

Asthmatics have been told they may need to use their blue reliever inhalers more often over the next few days, while people with lung and heart problems have been told to avoid strenuous exercise.

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People 'should not feel daunted' by seven fruit and veg

People "should not feel daunted by a big target" like eating seven pieces of fruit and veg every day, the leader author of a study into healthy eating has said.

Dr Oyinlola Oyebode, from UCL's Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, said those who ate substantial amounts of fruit and veg at any age were known to cut their risk of death.

The clear message here is the more fruit and vegetables you eat, the less likely you are to die at any age.

Vegetables have a larger effect than fruit, but fruit still makes a real difference. If you're happy to snack on carrots or other vegetables, then that is a great choice but if you fancy something sweeter, a banana or any fruit will also do you good....

However, people shouldn't feel daunted by a big target like seven....it is always worth eating more fruit and vegetables. In our study even those eating one to three portions had a significantly lower risk than those eating less than one.

– Dr Oyinlola Oyebode

Read: Seven pieces of fruit and veg cuts death risk 'by 36%'

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People should eat 'seven portions of fruit and veg a day'

Eating seven portions of fruit and vegetables is healthier and has a more protective effect, researchers in London claim.

New research suggests that five helpings of fruit and vegetables a day may not be enough. Credit: PA Wire

Current guidelines issued by the NHS suggests that every person has five different 80g portions of fruit and vegetables a day,

A new study from the University College London (UCL) suggests that eating seven or more helpings every day can reduce a person's risk of dying of cancer by 25 per cent and heart disease by 31 per cent.

After examining the eating habits of 65,000 people in England between 2001 and 2013, researchers found that a person's overall risk of death was reduced by 42 per cent if they consumed more than seven portions.

Met police to hold FGM conference this weekend

Following the first prosecutions for female genital mutilation the Met Police will today hold a conference targeting communities most affected by FGM. The event in West London will see officers from the Sexual offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command join forces with support agencies.

Forward UK, Daughters of Eve, Equality Now and Black Womens Health are all attending along with representatives from communities affected by the practice. Six victims of FGM will be speaking about their experiences at the event. Met officers will offer advice on the law and how to safeguard children

Detective Superintendent Jason Ashwood of the Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command said 'This conference represents our ongoing efforts to tackle the issue head on. For too long it has been a taboo subject which is why we are pleased to see it being more widely talked about'

Charity to offer vital homeless aftercare

For the thousands of people who sleep rough in London hospitals are often the only place to go for help.

Life expectancy for a man sleeping rough is 30 years lower than the average.

Now a charity is launching a special service to offer the vital aftercare needed when people are discharged from hospitals. Ria Chatterjee went to see it in action.

Hospital aftercare for the homeless launches

A scheme to provide aftercare for homeless people after they have been discharged from hospital is launched today. St Mungo’s has been given £3.6 million of a £10 million boost from the Department of Health for the new scheme.

Homeless people are often discharged back onto the street after hospital treatment with a third getting help with their living situation. This fails to deal with underlying health issues. St Mungo's will now launch an aftercare network for homeless people.

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