How to Receive a Healthy Amount of Sun Exposure
Mother Nature’s best natural skincare treatment is the sun, but has been labeled as a major health concern, said to be contributing to vast amounts of skin cancer. Let me first state before I go any further that yes, too much sun is not good, and should always avoid getting sunburn; but have you ever realized how good, and how important the right amount of sun exposure is for you skin and overall wellbeing.
Vitamin D has been getting much recognition in the media and research development lately, and the sun is the absolute best way the body can receive vitamin D, which in just recent years has been linked to many positive health benefits, like battling cancers such as lymphoma, lung, prostate, colon and skin cancer, and just recently has been connected with fighting immune system disorders such as Crohn’s disease, by helping the body produce over 200 antimicrobial peptides that fight off such infections.
Have you ever wondered why we get sick more during the winter and not so much during midsummer? Most Flu’s and colds occur during the winter, and I have heard it said from time to time that this because we are exposed to more germs during the winter months that we are not exposed to during the summer; however the more I research vitamin D the more I am convinced that healthy sun exposure plays a huge health benefits in promoting a healthy immune system.
The statistics of vitamin D deficiencies is amazing, ranging between 50-80% of children and adults, which ultimately causes the immune system to not do its job properly. If you live in parts of the world where you simple cannot receive the right amount of sun to obtain the required levels of vitamin D naturally, you can take vitamin D supplements, but should get your vitamin D levels tested by your doctor first. Too much vitamin D can be harmful. When receiving vitamin D naturally from the sun the body self regulates the amount it needs through the skin, your body does not do this when taking vitamin D orally. The optimal level of vitamin D should be between 55-65 ng/ml. There are two different test available, 1, 25 (OH) D, and 25(OH) D. The 25 (OH) D which is also called 25-hydroxyvitamin D is most recommended by doctors as the better marker for vitamin D status.
Just to reiterate what was stated in the introduction paragraph one more time, and that is “too much sun is not good”, but the right amount is very necessary. How much is too much and how much is just enough. Every ones skin is different; the goal is to gradually build a tolerance. For example early in the season 15- 20 minutes of sun exposure without the use of a sun block is probably all you will want to expose you skin to and gradually build up. I know for me by midsummer I can work just about an entire day out in the sun without getting burned, but early spring give me no longer that a half hour and I’m fried.
Many sun blocks can contain questionable chemicals that I personally do not want to be rubbing all over my body, especially after learning how permeable our skin is, besides sun block actually prevents the body from naturally producing vitamin D by over 95%. You may be getting a nice tan, but no vitamin D. If you will be spending long periods of time in the sun and can’t escape its powerful rays then yes pleas protect your skin, whether it be wearing protective clothing such as a hat, long sleeves, sun glasses, or applying a safe sun screen protection.