By Keith Paine
A: To scientists, the answer to this question is a bit of a paradox. Radiation from the sun is both the leading cause of skin cancer and our major source of Vitamin D. We’ve all heard of the dangers of too much sun exposure, yet Vitamin D derived from the sun actually reduces the risk of many cancers, as well as being an essential strengthener of your immune system, skin, bones and teeth. Not to mention that Vitamin D increases
levels of serotonin, which means getting us in a better mood. Those of us who live in the Northern Hemisphere, not surprisingly, are more in need of sunlight then our southern-hemisphere neighbors.
Here are some keys for getting some safe sunshine :
*Avoid direct, unprotected exposure to the sun when it is most intense, from the hours of 10am to 3pm in the summer.
*10-15 minutes of exposure to direct sunlight without sunscreen, as long as it’s not at the hottest time of day, is generally accepted as being enough exposure to get the benefits of sun without endangering your skin.
*Use sunscreen otherwise, and re-apply often, even with the products that claim they are water- and sweat-proof. Any product with an SPF of 30 or above is generally offers the same amount of protection.
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