Popular to contrary belief, Vitamin D is not a vitamin nor a nutrient. It’s a hormone that our body produces in our skin from a photolytic reaction with ultraviolet light.
Sunlight turns the cholesterol in the skin into beneficial Vitamin D3- a powerful hormone our body needs. 60-80% of the world’s population are deficient in Vitamin D3. This is largely due to our modern-day culture of screens and busyness. Sunscreens further add to this deficiency as we think the more sunscreen we lather on ourselves the more protection we’re providing our skin with. This is not always the case as research proves that Vitamin D helps to prevent skin cancer.
It’s all about balance.
Too much sun is damaging to our skin and health. Too little creates a Vitamin D deficiency which has been linked to cancers, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, depression, bone loss and autoimmune diseases.
Dr. Mark Hyman, American Physician, and author, suggests full body exposure to the sun for 15-20 minutes a day between 10AM and 2PM daily, without sunscreen except for your face.
I would suggest doing this at 10AM as sunlight triggers specific chemicals and hormones such as melatonin that are vital to healthy sleep, aging and mood. Not to mention, it releases endorphins and makes us feel happier!
The evidence is overwhelming that Vitamin D- the sunshine vitamin plays a fundamental role in our health. Here’s some of the benefits:
- Aids calcium absorption (When you get enough of the sunshine vitamin, your calcium needs drop by half)!
- Improves bone health
- Slows down the growth of malignant tumours
- Prevents heart disease
- Prevents depression
- Improves immunity
- Promotes good sleep
Join me in making the sunshine vitamin a daily habit!
Ideas to get your daily dose of sunshine:
- Have a work meeting outside
- Go for a brisk walk
- Take your lunch break outside
- If it’s holiday, lay in the sun for those 20 minutes
Think outdoors. Get your kiddies outside, get yourself outside and bring the sunshine in!