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Posted on 06-03-2015

Here are some tips on how to have some fun in the Sun safely!

You know we all LOVE to be in the sunshine during the Spring and Summer months when many of us have extra time to be outside and enjoy it! Just keep in mind that the sunscreen market is HUGE right now and that doesn't mean, lather up the whole family with the most sunscreen. Actually, most sunscreens have carcinogenic agents (cancer causing) and we don't need extra chemicals in our bodies, we need less! So, what do you do? There is a website where you can see all the testing and sunscreens tested that are lowest in toxins. Website to see thishttp://www.ewg.org/2015sunscreen/

If you are just going on a quick stroll, you can put on a hat and some raw unrefined organic coconut oil to protect the skin naturally! If you are out in the water or hiking and don't want to get burned; make sure you drink extra water with electrolytes and put on an active sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide for the best UVA blockage. Some sunscreens prevent sunburn, but not other types of skin damage. Make sure yours offers broad spectrum protection. 

Here are some tips from the EWG website of what to do before you go outside:

  1. Wear Clothes (hats, shirts, shorts, pants, shield your skin UV rays, reducing your risk by 27%)
  2. Find Shade or Make your Own (picnic under a tree or use an umbrella or canopy at the beach; keep infants in the shade reducing risk of multiple burns by 30%)
  3. Sunglasses are Essential (protect your eyes from the UV rays as much as possible in peak hours if over 30 minutes)
  4. Check the UV Index (to help you plan your outdoor activities and prevent sun overexposure)
  5. Plan Around the Sun (go outdoors in the earl morning or late afternoon when the sun is lower in the sky)
  6. Don't Get Burned (red, sore, blistered skin means you have gotten too much sun!)

Don’t fall for high SPF labels. Anything higher than SPF 50+ can tempt you to stay in the sun too long. Even if you don’t burn, your skin may be damaged. Stick to SPFs between 15 and 50+. Pick a product based on your own skin coloration, time outside, shade and cloud cover. Reapply often.

News about vitamin A. Eating vitamin A-laden vegetables is good for you, but spreading vitamin A on your skin may not be. Government data show that tumors and lesions develop sooner on skin coated with creams laced with vitamin A, also called retinyl palmitate or retinol. It’s in one-fourth of all sunscreens reviewed by EWG. Avoid any sun product whose label says retinyl palmitate, retinol or vitamin A.

Ingredients matter. Avoid the sunscreen chemical oxybenzone, a synthetic estrogen that penetrates the skin and can disrupt the hormone system. Look for active ingredients zinc oxide, avobenzone and Mexoryl SX. They protect skin from harmful UVA radiation.

No insect repellent. If you need bug repellent, buy it separately and apply it first before sunscreen.

Pick a good sunscreen. EWG’s sunscreen database rates the safety and efficacy of about 1,400 SPF-rated products, including about 750 sunscreens for beach and sports use. We give high ratings to brands that provide broad spectrum, long-lasting protection with ingredients that pose fewer health concerns when absorbed by the body.

Cream or spray? Cream, because sprays cloud the air with tiny particles that may not be safe to breathe. Reapply cream often. Sunscreen chemicals sometimes degrade in the sun, wash off or rub off on towels and clothing.

No powder! The FDA treats powdered sunscreens as unapproved new drugs and may take enforcement action against companies that sell them – except for small businesses, which can sell powders until December 2013.

Message for men: Wear sunscreen. In 2009, nearly twice as many American men died from melanoma as women. Surveys show that 34 percent of men wear sunscreens, compared to 78 percent of women. Reduce your cumulative lifetime exposure to damaging UV radiation.

Got your vitamin D? Many people don’t get enough vitamin D, a hormone manufactured by the skin in the presence of sunlight. Your doctor can test your level and recommend supplements if you are low in this vital nutrient.

So, now you have the facts to make informed choices to stay safe in the sun!

Have fun in the sun! Be aware and be safe! 

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