A sun myth.
Welcome to my Lab. So it is about time to look at the next and super important layer of the shield. Since summer has finally arrived let’s have a closer look at the sun and it’s manifold effects on the body.
So you get out into the sun and the best end result is, you get a tan, right? And when you stay too long in the sun, you get burned. And this leads to cancer. And therefore there is sunscreen. So far so…WRONG!
Besides the fact that a tan is only cosmetic, the real more important benefits of sun exposure have way more to do with increased production of melatonin, resetting of your own circadian clock, more vitamin D production and an increase in hormone production overall (think thyroid and gonads). Bad news is, you will miss 80% of the good stuff when you paint yourself white with a potential toxic sunscreen that also has a horrible effect on the (sea) water. We have historically all learned that too much sun leads to cancer. But is it so?
First of all lets dissect the rat study that grandfathered the fear mongering in terms of skin cancer caused by the sun. So back in the ’60s they took nocturnal animals (rats), and exposed them during the daytime with a source of artificial light. And after some time the poor animals indeed developed skin cancer. Astonishingly the extract from the study was not “Too much artificial light leads to skin cancer in nocturnal animals” but “Sun exposure leads to cancer”. Could be funny if it was not that sad. B.t.w. most skin cancer found in humans is developed on body parts that have not been exposed to the sun at all.
Of course you do not want to have a major sun burn every day, of course you don’t put your baby into the noonday sun in summer unprotected for several hours. My suggestion would be to develop a more natural approach when it comes to handling sun. Get accustomed and slowly increase the dose. Basically you can build a sun callus. You might need some time but it is probably the way nature intended. If you do not have the time, we have been looking into a bunch of textile solutions, most are in the final stages of testing. Till these are available, rather spend more time in the shade without a sunscreen than in the direct sun being covered with those chemical laden substances and have a natural sunny day!