December 23rd, 2011Vitamin D - The Sunshine Vitamin
by Jo Francks MH
An important part of Dr. Christopher’s Incurables Program is the sunbath. He recommended that you “take a sunbath each day in the nude and not through glass but in the direct sun.” There are two types of ultraviolet light from the sun, UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays are longer and penetrate deep into the skin to produce a dark tan. When in the sun too long they cause wrinkles and sun spots. UVB rays are shorter and cause the skin to burn. They are also the only rays that make vitamin D. Vitamin D is actually a steroid and is a powerful antioxidant. It is an important nutrient in preventing cancer including skin cancers. It is important for proper immune function and to prevent autoimmune diseases. It helps with proper brain function, diabetes prevention and is needed for absorption of calcium and phosphorus.
“Only allow two minutes on the front and two minutes on the back the first day. Then add two minutes front and back each day, but no more.” You should never stay in the sun long enough to get burned. The body stops making vitamin D once the skin starts to turn pink. When SPF sunscreen is applied it stops vitamin D production and may make you more susceptible to some skin cancers.
“The sun is the world’s greatest doctor but must be used by building up the exposed time in the sun gradually so as to not burn.” The best time for vitamin D production from the sun is 11:00 am until 1:00 pm or when the sun is the brightest. That is when the UVBs are most direct. They are not as effective when they come in at an angle and they are easily filtered out by smog, pollution, fog, clouds and windows.
“If it is a cloudy or cold day, use a sunlamp, but do not allow a burn.” The best source for vitamin D is from natural sunlight, but in the winter, it is not possible to get adequate amounts of vitamin D from the sun. Sunlamps or tanning beds are another option and some provide both UVA and UVB rays for vitamin D production.
Most salon tanning beds are calibrated to produce about 95% UVA light, but there are some that will produce both UVA and UVB rays. The same caution should be used with a tanning bed as with sun exposure and they can safely produce vitamin D in the winter months. Dr. Michael Holick of Boston University has shown that vitamin D produced by UVB radiation from a tanning bed maintains longer lasting and more consistent levels of vitamin D than taking vitamin D supplements. Dermatologists have found that tanning makes the skin give off endorphin’s which improve feelings of well-being and make you feel happier.
Sources: Herbal Home Health Care by Dr. John R. Christopher
Primal Body, Primal Mind by Nora T. Gedgaudas, CNS, CNT
Baby Boomer Diet by Donna Gates