Avoid sunlight at all costs. This is the message people receive in many ads and skin health campaigns. It has become many people’s obsession to steer clear from Mr. Sun. With the entire skin cancer and aging scare, who would not want to, right?
Perhaps, people forget that during the ancient time of the Yogis and Greeks, sunlight was used to heal various kinds of illnesses and to improve health. Today, health experts use sunlight exposure as a form of rehabilitation, called heliotherapy.
Yes, exposure to sunlight can do you well, but only in moderation. This means you should avoid long hours under the sun, and at certain times of the day, too. Experts say it’s safe to expose yourself to sunlight, but avoid the strongest rays that occur between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Here are five good reasons to get out in the sun a bit more:
1. Sunlight May Help Lessen Psoriatic Symptoms
If you have psoriasis, you should never shun sunlight exposure all the time. As UVA and UVB penetrates your skin, it triggers the release of calciton in gene-related peptides, which give your immune system a boost,
improves immunologic tolerance and suppress hyper sensitivity, making it an effective treatment for skin disorders, such as psoriasis.
In a study participated in by 84 people, outdoor sunbathing therapy,which lasted four weeks significantly improved symptoms associated with psoriasis.
2. Sunlight May Prevent Infection
Exposure to sunlight also increases the production of white blood cells necessary for fighting off infection. It kills bacteria, and German soldiers during World War I used the sun’s light to disinfect wounds and accelerate the healing process.
3. Sunlight Makes You Sleep Better At Night
Melatonin is a hormone that plays a key role in setting your body’s circadian rhythm,which involves many body processes including your sleeping and waking patterns. Once bright lights, especially sunlight comes into contact with your eyes in the morning, the production of melatonin decreases until it completely stops.
Moreover, sunlight stimulates the release of serotonin, a melatonin precursor. Serotonin converts to melatonin only during the darkness. Moderate exposure to sunlight triggers the release of just the right amount of serotonin, so that you won’t get too much melatonin at night, resulting in a balanced sleeping and waking hours.
Due to its sleep-inducing effects, sunlight exposure may also help people with Alzheimer’s who suffer from wakefulness.
4. Sunlight Makes You Happy
Serotonin is not only a melatonin precursor but a “happy” hormone, as well. Deprivation from sunlight can cause SAD or seasonal affective disorder, which is common during the long, dark winter months in the absence intense sunlight.
SAD is also common in people working in buildings and workers who barely spend time under the sun. Whether it is SAD or not, if you’re feeling blue, just go out and enjoy the sunshine.
5. Sunlight Gives You Lots Of Vitamin D
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient you can get from food and exposure to sunlight. When you go out on a sunshiny day, UVB radiations trigger a photosynthetic reaction in the skin which leads to the production of Vitamin D, often called “the sunshine vitamin.
” This oil-based vitamin plays an important role in many processes in the body, such as:
Vitamin D Helps With Bone Development
Vitamin D regulates the absorption of calcium and phosphorous into the bones. Therefore, without sufficient vitamin D, your bones cannot develop properly. According to some researches, increased vitamin D3 levels means stronger bones and lesser risk for fractures of any types.
Insufficient vitamin D in children can result in rickets; a condition characterized by poor bone growth and bone deformities, particularly bowed legs.
In adults, not enough vitamin D in the body can lead to, or worsen osteoporosis in both men and women, and also cause a painful bone disease, called osteomalacia.
Several studies have shown that exposure to sunlight during the early years plays a huge part in a person’s height. For moms, now you know why you need to take your baby outdoors to bask in the morning sunshine.
Vitamin D May Prevent Multiple Sclerosis
In a study about the relationship between multiple sclerosis and Vitamin D, researchers found out that the disease is more common in people living in higher latitudes.
Those who moved in places far from the equator before the age of 15 have an increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis, while those who moved much later than the age 15 were less susceptible. The study suggests that exposure to sunlight during the early years up to adolescence plays a part in the risk of developing multiple sclerosis.
In many separate studies, babies born after October are less prone to the disease while the babies born after May are at a higher risk. The studies show that the mother’s exposure to sunlight during pregnancy may also influence a person’s risk of multiple sclerosis.
Vitamin D Lowers Your Risk For Certain Types Of Cancer
Overexposure to UV rays increases a person’s risk of developing skin cancer commonly known as melanoma, basal cell carcinoma, and squamous cell carcinoma.
However, underexposure to sunlight increases a person’s risk to other forms of cancer, such as breast cancer, colon cancer, and lymphoma, as well as ovarian and prostate cancer.
Dr. Frank Garland and Dr. Cedric Garland were the first to link vitamin D deficiency and cancer after observing that rates of colon cancer was three times higher in New York compared to New Mexico.
Surprisingly, although excessive exposure is one known cause of melanoma, continued prolonged exposure may help treat early-stage of this type of skin cancer. Melanoma occurs in the areas of the skin least exposed to sunlight, therefore exposing these areas may help get rid of the accumulating melanocytes.
Vitamin D Lowers Your Risk For Hypertension And Cardiovascular Diseases
Researchers from the Free University of Berlin Department of Natural Medicine conducted a study where they exposed two groups of hypertensive individuals to tanning beds that emit full-spectrum UV radiations and UVA-only radiation.
In a span of three months, the individuals exposed to UVB radiations had a high increase in their vitamin D levels and had a significant improvement in their blood pressure. Furthermore, sufficient vitamin D may help prevent inflammation attributed to atherosclerosis,as a study showed that it relaxes vascular smooth muscles.
Vitamin D Lowers Your Chances Of Getting Diabetes
In many different studies, there sults showed that sufficient vitamin D levels during the early years can significantly decrease a person’s risk of developing type 1 diabetes later on.
In a study published last 2001, findings suggested that children at the age of one with an intake of 2,000 IU vitamin D per day were 80 percent less susceptible to developing type 1 diabetes than the vitamin D deficient children, who were four times more likely to develop the disease.
The rate of production of vitamin D would depend on the amount of UVB rays penetrating the skin. Did you know that fair-skinned people synthesize more vitamin D in a half hour sun exposure than dark-skinned people? This is because melanin can block the penetration of UVB rays, along with other factors such as clothing, sunscreen lotion and extra body fat.
If you have dark spots, worry no more. You can easily eliminate them with skin care products like Illuminatural 6i without any pain, peeling,or other undesirable side effects. It is a combination of vitamins, antioxidants, lighteners and moisturizers that will give you a flawless skin.
Remember, to get the most out of the sun’s healthy benefits, avoid exposure between 10 a.m., and 2 p.m. The excellent time for sunbathing is early in the morning between 7 and 9 a.m. If you can’t shun outdoor activities during the peak hours, put on sunscreen and wear protective clothing.