Andrew Huberman is a neuroscientist at Stanford University in California who’s gained huge popularity for his podcast about physical and mental health.

It’s called the Huberman Lab, and it has millions of listeners. Huberman himself has more than six million followers on Instagram where he posts snippets of his conversations with experts about sleep, exercise, meditation and diet, all with the goal of teaching people how to optimize their health.

Most of the topics he covers address longevity, society’s obsession-turned-billion dollar industry to live better, healthier lives for as long as possible.

But if Andrew Huberman really wanted to give the full picture of what it takes to live longer and be healthier, he’d have a mind-blowing episode on air pollution and removing toxic fracked gas from people’s homes.

Scientists (and gas companies) have known for a long time that toxic air causes premature death for millions. Many reports have come out over the years about the toxicity of air pollution from traffic emissions, goods manufacturing and fossil fuel extraction.

What’s not being talked about nearly enough is the noxious fumes INSIDE our dwellings that are making us sick.

Nitrogen oxides, formaldehyde, benzene and methane are just a few of the chemicals you’re breathing in if you use a gas-powered cooktop. What’s worse, your gas stove doesn’t even have to be turned on to emit toxic-yet-undetectable gas into your living space. Fumes are seeping out 24/7.

People in B.C. just got alarming news that we’re getting it worse than 17 other major North American cities: benzene levels are 50 times higher in Vancouver homes supplied by FortisBC (and the rest of their B.C. customers, no doubt).

Benzene is a known carcinogen that is bad news in small doses, let alone 50 times the normal amount.

Where’s the public outrage?

Kids and adults are slowly getting sick with asthma, heart disease, dementia and certain types of cancers from breathing toxic gas inside their homes. But to get any response from governments or companies, it seems that people need to be poisoned all at once. We know this from public health incidents like Burnaby’s Parkland refinery fire in Vancouver in January.

Millions of people dying from outdoor air pollution every year is a massive yet seemingly insurmountable problem — there are so many sources contributing to smog and pollution that most people just can’t wrap their head around how to tackle it. And for those who do get sick, it’s nearly impossible to point the finger at a single company or factory to blame. It’s a systemic issue.

But the presence of indoor pollutants has a pretty clear culprit: gas companies. Piping gas into our homes for heat or burning it on our range stoves brings in a who’s-who of toxic chemicals. Thankfully, we have cleaner cooktops and heating options at our fingertips. This problem feels solvable.

Except that the multi-billion dollar gas industry has been running massive marketing campaigns over the years to paint its product as a safe, green alternative to other “dirty” fossil fuels. Most people see the name “natural” gas and rest easy believing it’s safe, of the earth and all that.

The well-tested phenomenon of labeling things “natural” has been exploited by the gas industry (and the health and wellness industry too, by the way): companies cover up the fact that “natural” gas is actually methane: a dangerous greenhouse gas that traps far more heat in the atmosphere than emissions from burning coal.

As a result, millions of North Americans still cook with gas every day, literally burning a toxic fossil fuel right under their noses. And when they do, they’re putting themselves and their families at risk of a host of dangerous illnesses, not to mention fuelling an industry that, if expanded to meet the needs of ever more dwellings, will destroy any hope of stopping runaway climate change.

But if longevity, memory or climate don’t concern you, maybe your face does?

Nitrogen oxides are a main component to outdoor air pollution, a chemical that has been shown to age skin. Exposure to air pollution increases face wrinkles and age spots.

Studies in cities like New York and London, and countries including Germany and China, found that the occurrence of age spots on people’s cheeks rose by 25 per cent with even a small increase in pollution: 10 micrograms of NO2 per cubic metre.

Air pollution also ignites our skin’s melanocytes, which release extra pigment and create unwanted spots. It also makes blood vessels grow, which means inflammation that can increase redness and rosacea.

And here come the big guns: when exposed to air pollution, your skin goes into repair mode which “excites enzymes that re-absorb damaged collagen”. Those excited enzymes remove that damaged collagen, taking more than your skin can create. That reduction in collagen means a higher likelihood of fine lines and WRINKLES.

“Traffic pollution [is] emerging as the single most toxic substance for skin… the dream of perfect skin is over for those living and working in traffic-polluted areas…” said Dr. Mervyn Patterson, a cosmetic doctor at Woodford Medical clinics in the UK. “It is definitely something people now need to take seriously.”

If you’re reading this from a city or town with low traffic emissions feeling safe from the fray, keep reading. Because regardless of the pollution outside your front door, cooking with a gas stove is adding nitrogen oxides and particulate matter into your air, damaging your skin too.

Global cosmetics and skin care companies are taking note. Both L’Oreal and Clinique have run studies finding that eczema and hives are more common in people exposed to higher levels of air pollution. Clinique has even launched a sonic face cleansing brush they claim removes pollution.

Looking at my own small collection of skin care products, I realize now the dollars I’ve spent are no match for the pollution-caused-skin-damage that no night cream or tonic can solve.

One of the easiest protections against asthma, premature death from heart disease or lymphoma, dementia and aging skin is getting gas out of your home.

And since you now know skin care lotions don’t stand a chance against particulate matter, you can feel good about investing that money into the newest anti-aging solution instead: an induction stove.