Air pollution levels have reached “very high” or “high” in eight regions across the UK, the government has said.Greater London, the south-east and eastern England had “very high” levels in some isolated pockets, due to high pressure and light winds, Defra said. People with lung problems, adults with heart problems, or older people should avoid strenuous physical activity in the most badly hit areas, it said. In London, the Mayor issued a separate “very high” alert about “filthy” air. Northern Ireland, south-west England, West Midlands and Yorkshire and Humberside all had “high” pollution levels in some areas, according to Defra. Experts say young, fit people are unlikely to encounter any serious short term problems, but some people should take extra care. dults and children with lung or heart problems should take it easy and avoid strenuous physical exertion, particularly outside.  People with asthma may be more breathless than usual and need to use their reliever inhaler more often. Anyone experiencing discomfort, such as sore eyes, cough or sore throat, should consider taking it easy and limiting the time they spend outdoors.  For the latest forecasts and health advice, visit Defra UK Air.  “High” levels are expected to be seen again on Tuesday in many places across England and Wales, with “very high” levels possible again in south-east, central and eastern England, Defra said.  And on Wednesday, moderate to high levels of pollution are expected in southern and eastern parts of England. The last time “very high” levels were recorded was on 1 December 2016 in two regions.  The government advised people to check its five-day pollution forecasts and to follow Defra’s health advice. Defra has 5,000 monitoring stations across the UK to record pollutant levels in specific locations.

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