Archive for Vitamin D

Sun or Sunscreen – Which is more hazardous to your health?

I thought this was a great topic for summer when we spend the most time outdoors in the sun.    We all know too much sun is bad for us and sunburns can increase your risk of cancer.  Our bodies do need the sun for Vitamin D.   After you get 10-20 minutes of Vitamin D from direct sunlight it is time to apply the sunscreen, head for shade or wear protective clothing..

Do you know if your sunscreen is safe for you?  I was shocked to find out that of all the 10,000 plus ingredients in our personal care products only 11% has been reviewed for safety.  Crazy! 90% of what we put on our bodies may or may not be toxic.  Why is this so important?  Because skin is the largest organ of your body and capable of absorbing up to 80 percent of everything you put on it.

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has answers for you – http://www.ewg.org/2010sunscreen/.   They research the sunscreens every year.   You can search for your sunscreen and they score them from 1-10, 1 being best and 10 being most hazardous.

They recommend to use sunscreen, but look for shade, wear protective clothing and avoid the noontime sun before smearing on the cream. Here are the some of the surprising facts:

1) There’s no consensus on whether sunscreens prevent skin cancer.
2) There’s some evidence that sunscreens might increase the risk of the deadliest form of skin cancer for some people.
3)  There are more high SPF products than ever before, but no proof that they’re better.
4)  Too little sun might be harmful, reducing the body’s vitamin D levels.
5)  The common sunscreen ingredient vitamin A may speed the development of cancer.  Who would have thought a vitamin applied to the body could cause skin tumors and lesions?

Here are my suggestions:

1)  Get your 10 minutes of Vitamin D first thing in the AM with no lotion, makeup or even sunglasses – best areas to sun are face, chest and arms.  Vitamin D boosts your mood so great way to start off the day.
2)
Stay out or limit your exposure to the sun from 11-2PM.
2)  Wear protective clothing, hats, rash guards or swim shirts.
3)  Use mineral sunscreens (containing zinc oxide or titanium) when you plan on being in the direct sun for a long period.  Do not use sunscreens with Oxybenzone on children.   We use the Alba Botanical and Aubrey Organics.
4)  Do your best to never get sunburnt.

Enjoy the fun in the sun…. Safely : )

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