We all know that prolonged exposure to the sun is harmful to our skin but in the age of tanning, people staying outdoors longer than expected and not to mention the problem with climate change, how can we know that we are getting just the right amount of sun that still can be considered as healthy?
With this question in mind, age and gender is not a factor but people who are more knowledgeable about this should address the specifics to the people around them, parents should know more so that they can adjust and teach their children on what and why this is important.
Of course, we shouldn’t be scared to get some sun into our skin. Sun exposure is important with the right amounts. Sunlight is the best source of Vitamin D. Yes, there are over the counter supplements that we can take that can supply the body with the said vitamin and the food we intake can supply us with Vitamin D but most of the time it isn’t enough so exposing our skin to the healthy sunlight is the way to go. Vitamin D helps absorb calcium and phosphorous in our diet that is vital for healthy bones and teeth.
Research says that healthy exposure to the sun depends on different factors, meaning not everyone has the same amount needed of sun exposure to be able to get their much-needed vitamin D also the amount of Vitamin D your skin gets depends on different circumstances such as the time of day, your location or where you reside (depending on the weather or season), the color of your skin and the amount of skin you expose.
- Depending on your skin color, the amount of time you need to expose your skin is shorter. For Caucasians and light skinned people an estimated 15-20 minutes of exposure to UVB light is all you need to get the right amount of Vitamin D. A sign that you have reached that amount is when your skin turns into a very light shade of pink. Darker skinned people can take 2-6 times longer. A rough estimate would be an hour or so.
- The time of day is also very important though it will definitely depend on the area you reside and its current climate still mostly the recommendations would fall into early mornings exposure.
- If your location is closer to the equator it is easier for you to produce and obtain Vitamin D all year round.
- The weather is also a factor. If there are more clouds present there is less UV radiation though UV can still penetrate the clouds getting sunburned is still an option. But if it is air pollution it can totally block the UV radiation.
After all that has been said we should keep in mind the facts and be vigilant. Remember, too much sun exposure can increase the risk of Skin Cancer and too little can cause Vitamin D deficiency.