It’s true that sunburn can significantly increase your risk of skin cancer and that spending too long in the sun ages your skin. But before you draw the curtains and plan to spend the spring and summer inside, consider how the sun actually supplies health benefits, too. Not convinced? Here are some of the key benefits of moderate sun exposure.
Boost Levels of Vitamin D for Bone Health
It’s all about the vitamin D – this essential nutrient is important for the body’s ability to absorb calcium and phosphorous from foods. Calcium and phosphorous are important for healthy, strong bones. While you can get vitamin D from your diet (eggs and meat plus oily fish like salmon and sardines) you get the most from direct sunlight shining on your bare skin. A deficiency in vitamin D can lead to soft, weak bones, deformities, rickets, and osteoporosis. There isn’t one set level of time that experts recommend you stay in the sun – everyone is different and the sun’s strength will be different at certain times of the year. Short periods – up to 15 minutes – outside without sunscreen in the summer every day will be enough to make enough vitamin D. Make sure you don’t start to burn or turn red. Most of the time you spend outside, you should be wearing sunscreen.
Alternative Vitamin D Benefits
Getting enough vitamin D is not only important for safeguarding your bones. Vitamin D can, according to studies, help reduce the risk of developing diabetes, reduce your risk of breast, rectal, and colon cancer, lower the risk of cataracts, boost your immunity, improve your metabolism to fight obesity, lower your blood pressure, and reduce your stroke risk.
More Significant Sun Advantages
If these benefits weren’t attractive enough, sunlight plays an important role in your mood and your sleep patterns according to many experts. Spending time every day in the sun helps you to regulate the body’s circadian rhythms which leads to better quality sleep – sleeping well, in turn, leads to health benefits. Plus, you feel better when you spend time in the sun. Sunshine lowers stress, improves your mood and helps beat Seasonal Affective Disorder. Many studies link lower rates of depression with more time spent outside. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and enjoy the sunshine!