Published on August 20, 2021
Video Friday: Summer vacation may be over, but the summer sun is still here! Here’s how and why you should take advantage of the sun.
In the video featured today, Dr. Christiane Northrup, MD, reminds us about why we all need to get enough sunlight. It is vital to our health. While ancient cultures used the sun to heal all kinds of illnesses and to maintain health, today we are told by many health authorities to stay out of the sun. Negative messages about the sun and skin cancer, even tanning, have scared people into staying indoors or covering up at all times when going outdoors, to the point where the body is unable to reap the benefits of sunshine and UV exposure.
Listen in to hear about the key benefits of sunshine that many people are likely lacking, and how to get the most while avoiding over exposure.
Watch the Video
After watching the video, be sure to make note of our added details below!
Why Everyone Needs Sunlight
Here is a quick summary of what this video discusses, along with additional information and details from GrassrootsHealth:
- Ancient cultures used sunlight for healing. The sun was mentioned in ‘medication recipes’ and for certain medical preparations, disinfection, and photochemical reactions. Sunlight was used to control germs on skin and in the environment. In fact, scientific proof of the healing effects of the sun was first recorded by Greek physicians, starting with Hippocrates, around 460-370 BC.
- The sun is meant to be our main source of vitamin D. Our bodies naturally produce vitamin D from the sun under the right circumstances, such as the time of year or day, amount of clothing or sunscreen we are wearing, and other conditions. Given the chance, the body produces enough vitamin D from sunshine to reach recommended levels of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L).
- Sunshine induces the production of vitamin D, nitric oxide, and serotonin, all of which have beneficial effects on our health. Full spectrum sunlight contains wavelengths that offer even more for our health.
- Sunshine can help prevent heart disease, promote bone health, helps protect against cancer (including melanoma), dementia, and asthma, and can boost immune health and may even increase fat loss.
- Avoiding sun is as detrimental to health as smoking. A study among 30,000 Swedish women by Lindqvist et al. found that “smokers in the highest sun exposure group were at a similar risk as non-smokers avoiding sun exposure, indicating avoidance of sun exposure to be a risk factor of the same magnitude as smoking.”
- Are you using sunshine to get your vitamin D? How much do you need? Everyone needs different amounts of sunshine to make enough vitamin D without burning, and may need additional vitamin D from food and supplements to reach the scientists’ recommended level of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L). Testing your level and retesting after starting a new supplement dose or sunshine routine is necessary to ensure levels are achieved and maintained.
- How do you get enough of the best sun rays, and safely? And what about safe sunscreens?
- Don’t avoid the sun… Get healthy sun exposure to benefit your health!
Are You Getting Enough Vitamin D from Sun, Supplements, or Other Sources?
Let us know what your daily vitamin D routine is while testing your levels. Contribute your data as a citizen scientist – what other discoveries can we make together?
Having and maintaining healthy vitamin D levels and other nutrient levels can help improve your health now and for your future. Choose which to measure, such as your vitamin D, omega-3s, and essential minerals including magnesium and zinc, by creating your custom home test kit today. Take steps to improve the status of each of these measurements to benefit your overall health. You can also track your own intakes, symptoms and results to see what works best for YOU.
Enroll and test your levels today, learn what steps to take to improve your status of vitamin D (see below) and other nutrients and blood markers, and take action! By enrolling in the GrassrootsHealth projects, you are not only contributing valuable information to everyone, you are also gaining knowledge about how you could improve your own health through measuring and tracking your nutrient status, and educating yourself on how to improve it.
Help everyone Move Research into Practice with vitamin D and other nutrients! As a special birthday gift to everyone, in honor of the science, we have created a special scholarship fund for anyone to donate to that will go towards helping others participate. Your donation will allow anyone to get help with funding their participation when they need it.
Text-to-give: Text Daction to 44321 to add to our Scholarship Fund.
How Can You Use this Information for YOUR Health?
Having and maintaining healthy vitamin D and other nutrient levels can help improve your health now and for your future. Measuring is the only way to make sure you are getting enough!
STEP 1 Order your at-home blood spot test kit to measure vitamin D and other nutrients of concern to you, such as omega-3s, magnesium, essential and toxic elements (zinc, copper, selenium, lead, cadmium, mercury); include hsCRP as a marker of inflammation or HbA1c for blood sugar health
STEP 2 Answer the online questionnaire as part of the GrassrootsHealth study
STEP 3 Using our educational materials and tools (such as our dose calculators), assess your results to determine if you are in your desired target range or if actions should be taken to get there
STEP 4 After 3-6 months of implementing your changes, re-test to see if you have achieved your target level(s)