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A respiratory diseases expert has estimated the effect on your lungs of inhaling Sydney’s current fire haze is the equivalent of smoking 32 cigarettes.

And hazardous chemicals in the smoke could adversely affect the babies of pregnant women or cause heart attacks in people with underlying cardiac conditions.

Associate Professor Brian Oliver has analysed the levels of smoke-related particulate, or soot, pollution since the acrid-tasting air from the state’s bushfires moved over the city this week.