Supports Chapter 11: Our irrational fear of sunlight
The UK's Daily Express today has an article about yet another study saying that we don't get enough sunlight. If we want to avoid conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, and live longer we need to get out in the sun more, it says.
In 1997 I wrote much the same article for my column 'Second Opinions' in The Oxford Times. The editor refused to print it because it was in conflict with what we were being told by the health industry. A shame really as the paper was published on 21 June, the first day of summer, and so the timing was ideal for such an article. This was the reason I gave up writing for the paper. Well, the articles took time and they didn't pay much then.
Since then many more studies have also said the same thing.
In the Express's article, 'experts' from authoritative bodies such as Cancer Research UK say that they know about this and that we need more vitamin D and should strive to get out more.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't they the same people who have been scaring us with anti-sun propaganda for the last few decades?
And there are a couple of other points they still aren't telling us:
Firstly, it is important to know that only sunshine around midday produces vitamin D at our latitude. UVB, the active wavelength, doesn't penetrate the atmosphere well, so until the sun is well up in the sky, the atmosphere it has to travel though reduces its strength markedly. Sunshine earlier in the day is mostly UVA. It is UVA which causes sunburn - without the vitamin D benefit.
Secondly, it's also important NOT to use a sunscreen as this filters UVB, thus inhibiting vitamin D production. Sunscreens have also been shown independently to increase skin cancer risk. The really silly thing about sunscreens is that they are very good at screening us from the beneficial UVB, but not very effective at stopping harmful UVA! There is much more on this at http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/sunlight.html and http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/full_spectrum_sunlight.html.
Unlike most Brits who take their holidays by the seaside in the summer, for many years now I have been heading south to an island off the coast of west Africa during the winter, just to keep my Vitamin D levels up. If global 'climate change' continues its now 10-year-long current cooling trend for another decade and a half, as it is forecast to do, I'll have to think about going south during our summer too. The last time I comfortably got out in the garden in the nuddy for any length of time was March!