Thursday, April 16, 2009

Don't Forget to Grab Some Sun Rays!

The sun is finally shining down with all of the energy and warmth of a typical spring here in Michigan and across the midwest, and that means one thing according to what the media would have you believe: stay inside!

Am I right? Okay, so I exaggerated a bit, but the public has definitely been spooked into avoiding sun by many media sources because of skin cancer threats. They are quite valid, I must say, but that type of exposure and problem has been overblown a little bit.

Going out and taking the dog for a nice walk or cruising around with the top down in a convertible and everyday things of that nature is not much of a risk for the most part and only a small SPF sun block is usually needed.

On top of that, the health benefits for going out and getting some sun are too great to ignore.

People who stay inside too much are at risk for insomnia because the sunlight regulates our natural sleeping patterns and rhythms and allows us to store the right amount of melatonin for use later in the night after the sun goes down. People sleep better when they get out and enjoy the sun during the day.

Even if you're stuck at work, there's no excuse for not getting up and taking a break outside.

Also, most cases of vitamin D deficiency are the result of lack of sunlight as opposed to not drinking enough milk as the money-grubbing dairy campaigns would have you believe. Sunlight is the best source for natural Vitamin D and there is growing evidence that vitamin D deficiencies can lead to some pretty bad diseases such as multiple sclerosis, although more research is needed.

Be sure to get at least a solid amount of sun each day when the opportunity presents itself.