New Paper Continues Momentum of Pro-Sunlight Research

The Risks and Benefits of Sun Exposure 2016, published today in the Journal Derma to-Endocrinology, comes on the heels of other hundreds of papers from dermatology and vitamin D researchers in the past five years documenting how the benefits of regular sun exposure outweigh the manageable risks. Among them:

Dr. H.J. van der Rhee and a dermatology/public health group from The Netherlands, published Regular Sun Exposure Benefits Health in the journal Medical Hypotheses in October. This paper documented potential benefits of UVR, and also discussed how regular non-burning UVR exposure actually helps prevent DNA damage in skin cells from subsequent exposure – providing one basis for the mechanism of why regular non-burning UVR exposure appears to reduce melanoma risk.

A 20-year prospective trial of 30,000 Swedish women published earlier this year documented that those who avoided intentional sun exposure shortened their life span by 0.6-2.1 years – a net-effect as significant as cigarette smoking.

British dermatologist Dr. Richard Weller called for his peers to re-think their sun-avoidance positions after publishing a paper in January showing that UVA light triggers a response that reduces blood pressure, and that the benefits of regular sun exposure outweigh the risks, which can be managed by preventing sunburn, by a factor of 80-1. “A substantial body of evidence shows that sunlight has health benefits and that these are independent of vitamin D, and thus cannot be reproduced by oral supplementation,” Weller wrote.

GrassrootsHealth and an international coalition of vitamin D experts published Sunlight and Vitamin D: Necessary for Public Health in 2015, showing that healthy vitamin D levels are consistent with outdoor living and regular sun exposure, concluding, “The current policy of sun avoidance is creating harm for the general population.”