Sun Exposure — When Is It Too Much?
Summer is here, and parents are lathering their kids with sunscreen to protect them as they go to the beach or just play outside. But, are they doing the right thing or making matters worse?
Safe sun exposure benefits are underestimated. First, sunlight allows your skin to produce generous amounts of vitamin D, a steroid hormone and not just another vitamin, which is leagues apart from other known nutrients in your body. Receptors that respond to vitamin D have been found in almost every single cell from brains to bones, which explains its unlimited positive health effects.
The benefits of vitamin D are immeasurable. In fact, correcting a vitamin D deficiency may cut your risk of dying in half.
Vitamin D is known to:
- Support your cardiovascular health
- Enhance your muscle strength
- Help produce optimal blood pressure levels
- Help maintain a robust immune system
- Help keep bones and teeth strong and healthy
The list doesn’t stop there. New evidence confirmed and cited health benefits of sensible sun exposure apart from vitamin D production include:
- Improving mood and energy levels
- Regulating melatonin production
- Synchronizing your circadian rhythm
- Protecting against melanoma and UV damage
- Suppressing symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Relieving pain from fibromyalgia
- Treating neonatal jaundice
- Treating seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
Unfortunately, instead of taking advantage of the sun as an amazingly beneficial and free health resource from nature, people avoid exposure to sunlight like the plague. This is due to the false recommendations of public health agencies and several skincare professionals, which more often than not are funded by the sunscreen industry.
It’s important to note that the sun can either be helpful or harmful depending on what type of ultraviolet light you’re getting.
The ultraviolet light from the sun comes in two main wavelengths:
- Ultraviolet A (UVA) – Considered the unhealthy wavelength because it penetrates your skin more deeply and cause more free radical damage.
- Ultraviolet B (UVB) – The healthy wavelength that helps your skin produce vitamin D. Both UVA and UVB can cause tanning and burning, although UVB does so far more rapidly.
Ironically, while bad UVA rays are constantly available all the time – all hours of day light and throughout the entire year – good UVB rays are low in morning and evening, and high at midday or solar noon, making it the most optimal time for vitamin D production and ironically the time in which we are warned to stay away from the sun.
How to Protect Your Skin from Sunburn
It’s important to understand that the benefits of sun exposure completely outweigh its risks, which is why totally avoiding the sun is unnecessary, and unwise.
To continuously enjoy the positive effects of sun exposure without getting burned, I recommend following these safety tips:
1. Protect your face and eyes by wearing a wide-brimmed hat or a cap.
2. Moisturize your skin naturally. Before sunbathing, apply organic coconut oil on the exposed areas of your skin. This will not only moisturize your skin to prevent dryness, but will also give you additional metabolic benefits.
3. Build an internal sunscreen with beneficial antioxidants. You can get those from Oxylent.
The amount of antioxidants you get from your diet plays a major role in how you effectively avoid sunburn. The more antioxidants you have in your skin, the lower your risk of getting burned. They act as an internal type of sunscreen and allow you to maximize your sun exposure while minimizing the risks.
Vitamins A and C are also important – your cells use them to regulate both light absorption and protection against sun overexposure. These two are included in Oxylent.
Sara Banta is a Stanford University Graduate with a Degree in Economics and Psychology, and a certified Natural Supplement Expert & Graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Sara is the Founder of Accelerated Health Products and host of the health & wellness podcast, Accelerated Health Radio.