Most people have heard about vitamin D but not enough people take advantage of its powerful benefits. Vitamin D helps to absorb calcium from the diet, creating strong and healthy bones. There is also research that suggests vitamin D plays a role in reducing the risk of cancer, hypertension, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and other medical conditions. There is very little vitamin D in the standard American diet and even eating a healthy diet will not provide the adequate levels required for optimal health. For this reason people must get out into the sun.
Summer time is the easiest time of the year to get natural vitamin D from sunlight because it is warm and more enjoyable to spend time outdoors while wearing less clothing. When people go outside and their skin is covered with clothing or sunscreen the vitamin D is not able to enter the body. The sunlight must reach exposed skin where it quickly converts cutaneous 7-dehydrocholesterol to the previtamin D3 that later is turned into vitamin D3 that the human body can use. It is recommended that everyone get at least 20 minutes of natural sun exposure 2-3 times a week to ensure optimal vitamin D levels. Please understand that this is not a suggestion to spend unreasonable amounts of time baking in the sun unprotected. Sunburn is dangerous and should be avoided. That being said, before you hit the shade or slather on protection, give a little thought to vitamin D.
Fish oil is well known for having a plethora of health boosting properties but it may also help protect people from sunburn. Rhodes et al conducted a study that examined the effect of fish oil on the risk of sunburn. They found that people who took fish oil were less likely to get sunburned than those not taking it. Because of this they also extrapolated that people habitually taking fish oil would have a lower risk of developing skin cancer over their lifetime. Although more research needs to be done on fish oil and photocarcinogenesis, this is an exciting point to add to the already impressive resume for fish oil.
When spending an extended amount of time in the sun, sometimes protection is needed in order to avoid skin-damaging sunburn. The best protection is either to cover the exposed skin with clothing or use topical protection such as sunscreen. The problem many people run into is that conventional sunscreen products are loaded with dangerous toxins and chemicals. One alternative option is coconut oil. Coconut oil can be used alone as a barrier for sun protection (blocks up to 30 percent of UV radiation), taken internally, and is also the main ingredient in many homemade and natural store-bought sunscreen products. After sun exposure coconut oil is also useful as a skin moisturizer and sunburn ointment. Coconut oil has amazing anti-fungal and skin rejuvenating properties that make it perfect for this role.
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About the author:
Kyle Price is a passionate and energetic leader in the field of health and wellness. He loves working with active young families and youth sports. He has a vision to change the dismal healthcare climate in America by promoting personal responsibility and educating people on making healthy lifestyle choices. His personal hobbies include: Scuba Diving, Motorcycles, Ultra light Backpacking, Mountain Biking, Crossfit, and public speaking.