OSU Study Sheds New Light on Asthma

By Joel DeVyldere

InhalerA new study from researchers at Oregon State University implicates unventilated gas stoves in childhood breathing conditions—namely wheezing, asthma, and bronchitis.

The Oregon State University College of Public Health and Human Sciences (CPHHS) found that “The prevalence of asthma and wheezing is higher than in homes where a gas stove was used with ventilation,” according to study co-author Ellen Smit.

OSU’s study highlights observable correlations anteceded by a 2013 study by the U.S. Department of Energy which found that 62% of southern Californians using unventilated gas burner stoves are regularly exposed to unhealthy levels of dangerous chemicals.

Gas stoves aren’t necessarily a death sentence. Kids from houses where an exhaust fan was used while cooking were 38% less likely to have bronchitis and 32% less likely to have asthma. They were also 39% less likely to have wheezing.

“Reducing exposure to environmental factors that can exacerbate asthma can help improve the quality of life,” said Molly Kile, an epidemiologist and associate professor at OSU.

Range hoods, best known for their noisy habit of keeping nitrogen dioxide out of your children’s lungs, can be had for about $150 to $200 and a trip to the department store.