Yay…the sun is finally here! So what should you do? Should you soak it up or fear it?
First, let’s look at the benefits of sunshine….
It provides the best way to optimise your vitamin D levels. Not only is vitamin D from the sun stored for longer in our bodies but also overdosing on vitamin D from the sun is impossible. According to the leading specialist in the field of vitamin D, Dr. Michael Holick, exposing large surface of our skin to direct sunlight for 15 to 25 minute between the hours of 10AM to 3PM a day can produce around 10,000 International Units (I.U.) of vitamin D.
Why is this important?
Well, an adequate level of vitamin D reduces the risk of breast, prostate and colon cancer, it also prevents heart disease, autism, osteoporosis, diabetes, and depression. Another important fact to note is that our skin upon exposure to UVB rays from the sun generates vitamin D3 Sulfate. This form of vitamin D protects the skin from ultraviolet damage and strengthens the immune system. According to Dr. Stephanie Seneff we can’t get this type of vitamin D from supplements. So if you care for a healthy immune system, you’d better spend some time outdoors.
Does wonders for the skin. So if you have any skin disorders, such as acne, eczema, psoriasis or any fungal infections moderate sun exposure might just treat it.
Regulates our appetite. I’m not sure about you but I am always less hungry during summer time.
Sunlight gives a boost to our immune system, the count of our white blood cells increases with the sun exposure which helps fight any infections. I, for example, have never caught a cold in the summer time.
Improves sleep quality. When you expose yourself to a natural sunlight as soon as you wake up your melatonin (sleep hormone) is suppressed throughout the day and released again at sunset. Aka, your body has more energy throughout the day and then at night it’s ready to sleep.
It makes people happy! On a sunny day your brain produces more serotonin, the body’s natural happiness hormone! I always feel more energetic and cheerful when the sun is out, do you?
Now, the drawbacks…….
…. well you might get sunburned if you stay in a direct sunlight for more than 30 minutes. However, if you are sensible and protect your body’s largest organ by finding shade or wear clothing such as hats, shirts and sunglasses, you will get all the benefits from the sun without getting burned.
If you are doing sports outside or have to stay in the sun for a longer period of time then put sunscreen on, but please choose wisely as most of the sunscreen lotions do not protect from dangerous rays of UVA. In fact, many scientific journals (references at the bottom) show that most sunscreen on the market increase skin cancer and leaves people with deficient levels of vitamin D.
Liz Wolfe in her book “Eat the Yolk” mentions how the multibillion sunscreen industry has led us to believe that we should slather on the sunscreen anytime we are outdoors.
I am an advocate for living a life free of toxins and fortunately, there are some safe sunscreen brands out there. These four are my favourite:
- Beautycounter Broad Spectrum sunscreen
- Badger sunscreen (you can buy it on iherb)
- Bamboo Botanicals Clear Zinc sunscreen
- Primal Life Organics sunscreen
You can also try using red raspberry seed oil (SPF 25- 50) and carrot seed oil (SPF 35 -40). Just mix a few drops with almond oil and shea butter. Or for a homemade sunscreen try this recipe created by Severine (WeChat: SeverineClement), founder of My Beauty Farm.
Natural sunscreen cream– 125 g
- 45 g coconut oil
- 33 g of a blend of carrier oils (preferably using oils which naturally have sun protection factor (SPF) such as carrot seed, raspberry seed, wheatgerm, avocado, and sesame oil)
- 14 g beeswax
- 14 g shea butter
- 20 g zinc oxide (non nano-particles)
- 0.625 g vitamin E
- 1 glass bowl
- Jar (container)
- Combine all the ingredients except zinc oxide and vitamin E in a bowl.
- Place the bowl in a pot of simmering water and wait for the ingredients to melt. Then remove the bowl from the pot and stir.
- Add zinc oxide and stir well
- Add vitamin E and stir well
- Pour the lotion into a jar and store at room temperature.
Your toxin free sunscreen is ready!
Remember humans evolved near the equator so sunlight literally powered our evolution! Your body is smart enough to tell you when you have had enough sun exposure by turning your skin pink. So get the initial vitamin D-boosting exposure, after which put some safe sunscreen on. Also, eat more veggies to increase antioxidants which protect against sun damage.
Wishing you tones of love and sun!
Your Certified Primal Health Coach
If you found this article useful I'd appreciate it if you could help me get the word out. Just share it on Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, WeChat moments, or even by email with anyone you think might benefit from reading it or working with me. I'll see that you get bonus karma points for taking the few seconds to do so. Thank you x