Thanks to modern technology I am sitting outside while fulfilling my daily commitment of writing. I have been writing about vitamins and minerals, how our soil has been depleted over several decades and why we need higher amounts of anti-oxidants to support our body's cells. There is another vitamin that most people are deficient in. It's Vitamin D, which is made by our bodies when we are exposed to the sun. Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to a lot of health problems. Because the body needs Vitamin D to properly use calcium, Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to bone related diseases such as osteoporosis and rickets. The vitamin is also crucial for cell regulation functions and therefore is key in preventing cancer.
So, what are some of the reasons why you might not get enough of this Vitamin? Well, how much time do you spend outside? Of the time you spend outside, how much time do you wear sunscreen? You see, we've been told that ultra violet light is bad and causes skin cancer. But it's clearly not all bad, because we desperately need it to produce Vitamin D. Of course our use of certain greenhouse gases has diminished the ozone layer and we are now exposed to more ultra violet radiation than we used to. I don't mean to suggest that we all go out and get crazy red sun burns, but know that every time you apply sunscreen, you are not allowing your body to produce a vitamin essential to your health. Also, I think it's worth noting that chemical sunscreens contain chemical compounds that are known carcinogens. They generate free-radical activity, which as we've learned damages cells and can lead to cancer. They also have estrogenic properties that affect sexual development and have other ill health effects.
I have to say, as I am writing this I am realizing that I need to write a bit more about sunscreen. But I want to read a little more and make sure I have some good sources. So in the meantime, try to get some sunlight on your skin, without sunscreen, I am not talking six hours of sun tanning here, just a little. And think about taking Vitamin D this fall, winter and spring when your body is probably not able to produce adequate amounts.
I hope you are still drinking lots of water too!