Importance of Vitamin D & The Sun

How Dermatologists Fuel Chronic Disease Rates With Their Flawed Sun Exposure Guidelines

Story at-a-glance

  • The U.S. Surgeon General, the American Academy of Dermatology, and The Skin Cancer Foundation all view sunlight irrationally as a dangerous skin cancer risk
  • Sun avoidance fuels health problems associated with vitamin D deficiency, including hypertension, cardiovascular disease, cancer, depression, and poses special health risks to pregnant mothers and their children
  • The evidence supporting sensible sun exposure is strong and clear, while there’s little evidence that sunscreen use protects against skin cancer, or that vitamin D supplements are bioequivalent to sunshine

By Dr. Mercola

In July 2014, the interim U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Boris Lushniak, who is also a dermatologist, issued a “Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer,”1,2 in which he declared UV radiation harmful and said sun exposure should be avoided altogether.

The American Academy of Dermatology and The Skin Cancer Foundation also advocate avoiding all sun exposure — regardless of the color of your skin — saying vitamin D supplementation can address any deficiencies.

This is an irrational and shortsighted position that lacks any credibility. The scientific evidence, now running in excess of 34,000 studies, detail that UV exposure is essential, both for vitamin D production and other benefits unrelated to vitamin D.

The color of your skin is a significant factor to determine appropriate exposure times and any advice that does not take this into consideration is illogical.  We are not nocturnal beings, avoiding the sun entirely is horrible advice that should not be followed.

Dermatologists’ Position on Sun Exposure Riddled With Fatal Flaws

Let’s remember that, because of their irrational concern, they were able to convince public health officials and media to convince people to use sunscreens.

What happened as a result of the public adopting this proactive “preventive” approach? Skin cancers actually increased.

Why? Because the dermatologists did not do their homework. Most sunscreens blocked UVB, which causes vitamin D levels to increase and lower cancer rates, but they let UVA, which can cause skin cancer when excessively exposed, to shine right through like a hot knife through butter.

What’s worse, they never admitted to their egregious mistake. Ironically,  the only location dermatologists approve of UV light treatment is in their office under costly supervision.

Avoiding Sun Exposure Radically Worsens Disease Rates

Advocating abstinence from UV light is undoubtedly fueling many health problems associated with vitamin D deficiency, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, autoimmune diseases and depression.

UVB exposure is essential for optimal health, and any risks of exposure are related to over exposure and burning. Research shows vitamin D is involved in the biochemical regulation of nearly every cell in your body, including your immune system.

Vitamin D deficiency can deteriorate your health in a number of different ways, as your cells need the active form of vitamin D to optimally regulate genetic expression.

As noted by William Grant, Ph.D., head of the Sunlight, Nutrition and Health Research Center (SUNARC), staying indoors to avoid sun exposure is “not particularly good advice,” adding that:3

“There are several papers indicating that occupational exposure to sunlight reduces the risk of melanoma. It is having fair skin, a high-fat, low fruit and vegetable diet, sunburning, etc., that are more linked to melanoma than total UV exposure.”

Vitamin D Is Crucial for Pregnant Women

Vitamin D is particularly important for pregnant women, as deficiency affects both the mother and her child in the short and long term, including raising the child’s long-term risk for diabetes, allergic rhinitis,4 arthritis, stroke, and cardiovascular disease.Recent research shows that raising maternal vitamin D levels helps children born in winter months develop stronger, healthier bones.5 Lead researcher Professor Nicholas Harvey, Ph.D., of the University of Southampton, also notes that sun exposure is the most important source of vitamin D.

Health initiatives such as GrassrootsHealth D*Action study,6 and the Protect Our Children NOW! campaign are both based on these fundamental and scientifically proven facts.

Dermatologists Ignore Skin Color

The fact that the American Academy of Dermatology issues the same recommendations for everyone, without regard for skin type, is telling. Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, they view sun exposure as nothing but a dangerous cancer risk to be avoided at all costs.

This is a really nonsensical, and most definitively nonscientific, stance. According to their advice, even if you have the darkest skin, you should always seek shade and wear protective clothing and/or sunscreen when outdoors.

The notion that supplements are bioequivalent to sunshine is lacking.  While I recommend supplements if UVB exposure is not available, to suggest that vitamin D can replace all the benefits of sun exposure is ridiculous.

In fact, each of us responds quite differently to vitamin D supplementation – there is a 6 to 10 times difference in dosage response between individuals.   If you are supplementing with vitamin D, you should have your levels checked twice per year to ensure you stay above 40ng/ml.

Because of this, vitamin D experts such as Grant and Dr. Michael F. Holick note that sensible sun exposure is far preferable to vitamin D supplementation.

Oversimplifying the Issue Is Not a Good Public Health Policy

The Skin Cancer Foundation echoes the American Academy of Dermatology’s recommendations.

When questioned about this philosophy and asked why the recommendations fail to take into account skin type and color, Dr. Henry Lim, who sits on The Skin Cancer Foundation’s photobiology committee, replied that such information is irrelevant because vitamin D supplements can address deficiency.

According to Lim:7

“We want to make it simple as a public health message — as to what the public should reasonably be able to absorb and understand. To fine tune it is just too complicated we feel.”

But by oversimplifying the matter, dermatologists place a great number of people at grave risk for vitamin D deficiency, which may not be identified until health problems have already set in. Moreover, the advice to use sunscreen is also on shaky scientific ground.

According to an analysis by epidemiologist Marianne Berwick, Ph.D., there’s very little evidence to suggest that sunscreen use will prevent skin cancer.

After analyzing a dozen studies on basal cell carcinoma, which is typically non-lethal, and the more deadly melanoma, Berwick found that people who use sunscreen tend to be more likely to develop both of these conditions.

Only 2 of 10 melanoma studies found that sunscreen was protective against this condition; three found no association either way. None found sunscreen use protected against basal cell carcinoma.8

Your Body Is Designed to Optimize Health Effects of Sun Exposure

While you certainly need to avoid the skin damage associated with sunburn, sun exposure is required for optimal health, and your skin type plays a major role in how much UVB exposure you need and can safely tolerate.

Darker-skinned people not only need more sun exposure to produce sufficient amounts of vitamin D, they’re also more protected from skin cancer due to their skin pigmentation. Yet this important reality is simply ignored by dermatologists, resulting in most African Americans being at a radically increased risk of cancers and heart disease from vitamin D deficiency.

As noted in a previous article by Nautilus:9

“How the sun affects you depends on your complexion, the shade of which is determined by melanin … The anti-oxidizing molecule is so versatile at protecting and repairing DNA from UV solar radiation that creatures from humans to fungi deploy it … [T]he melanin sits atop cellular DNA like tiny umbrellas pointed … out to shield from incoming rays …

[T]he same ultraviolet wavelengths in the 290 to 400 nanometers range that trigger melanin production also spark vitamin D creation. You cannot make one without the other.

Humans evolved to produce two kinds of melanin … The MC1R gene determines the type of melanin the body produces. In the mid-zone such as the Mediterranean region, people … produce eumelanin, the pigment responsible for brown or black hair and for dark skin that tans easily …

[I]n far northern Europe, humans paled, adapting to lower light … with a different type of melanin, called pheomelanin, associated with fair skin and blonde and red hair with minimal protective value, but allowing more UV to penetrate to make vitamin D. ”

Sun Avoidance Raises Risk of Internal Cancers

Dermatology is focused on one primary outcome — avoiding skin damage and skin cancer. But by focusing on just one side of the UV exposure issue, they’re actually promoting a lifestyle that may raise your risk of other lethal cancers and chronic diseases. Not only have higher vitamin D levels been shown to offer significant protection against a number of internal cancers, there’s also evidence showing higher levels offer protection against melanoma.

In fact, higher rates of melanoma are found among those who have low vitamin D levels; among indoor occupations; and in areas of the body that rarely or never see the light of day. In short, the vitamin D your body produces in response to UVB radiation is protective against skin cancer. As noted in The Lancet:10

“Paradoxically, outdoor workers have a decreased risk of melanoma compared with indoor workers, suggesting that chronic sunlight exposure can have a protective effect.”

Even more importantly, vitamin D has been shown to significantly reduce internal cancers, along with chronic diseases such as heart disease, which kill far more people than melanoma does. Breast11 and prostate12,13 cancers are just two examples where low vitamin D renders you more vulnerable to more aggressive forms of the disease. Recent research14 has also found that low vitamin D levels are associated with more severe peripheral neuropathy in cancer patients.

Reporting on recent research linking low vitamin D levels to an increased risk for aggressive breast cancer, Medical Daily writes:15

“The researchers linked vitamin D levels to the ID1 gene, which at high levels of expression is associated with breast cancer tumor growth. Past studies have shown that vitamin D is linked to inhibiting the expression of this gene, and that low vitamin D levels have been associated with more aggressive tumors. ”

Public Health Messages Should Be Based on All-Cause Mortality Reduction

TO READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE & VIEW THE VIDEOS< GO TO:    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/03/14/vitamin-d-sun-exposure-guidelines

Nutrition Tips to Fight Colds

Foods That Fight the Common Cold

October 26, 2015

Story at-a-glance

  • Since colds are viral in nature, antibiotics are completely useless and should be avoided, unless your physician diagnoses a serious secondary bacterial infection
  • Vitamin C is known for its benefits for infectious diseases. Kiwi fruits are exceptionally high in vitamin C, and research suggests kiwis may help reduce duration and severity of upper respiratory tract infections
  • Research shows chicken soup — especially when made from homemade bone broth — has medicinal qualities that significantly mitigate infection

By Dr. Mercola

The common cold is the most common infectious disease in the US and many other areas of the world.

Cold symptoms are triggered by hundreds of different viruses — not bacteria — and infection is typically spread by hand-to-hand contact between people, or by touching objects that harbor the pathogens.

Since colds are viral in nature, antibiotics are completely useless and should be avoided, unless your physician diagnoses a serious secondary bacterial infection. Using antibiotics when no bacterial pathogen is present simply contributes to the problem of antibiotic-resistant disease.

The key to preventing colds and recovering from them quickly is to maintain a strong immune system, which includes: optimizing your diet, avoiding sugar, optimizing your vitamin D level, getting enough sleep and exercise, managing your stress, and practicing good hand washing technique.

Just being exposed to a cold virus does not automatically mean you’ll catch a cold. If your immune system is operating at its peak, your body will be able to fend off the virus without ever getting sick, even if you’re exposed to it.

A number of foods, herbs, and supplements can be particularly helpful for promoting strong immune function1,2,3 which is the focus of this article.

Boost Your Immune Function with Vitamin C-Rich Foods

Some health experts, such as Dr. Ronald Hunninghake, believe vitamin C is one of the nutrients you need whenever something ails you, be it the common cold or cancer. Vitamin C is best known for its benefits for infectious diseases though.

A perfect example of the healing power of this antioxidant vitamin is the dramatic case of Allan Smith, who contracted a serious case of swine flu, and was brought back from the brink of death using a combination of IV and oral vitamin C.

Research4 published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews in 2013 found that regular supplementation with vitamin C had a “modest but consistent effect in reducing the duration of common cold symptoms.”

Endurance athletes who took vitamin C supplements also halved their risk for the common cold.

Kiwi fruits are exceptionally high in vitamin C, along with vitamin E, folate, polyphenols, and carotenoids, and research5 published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that a kiwi-packed diet reduced the duration and severity of upper respiratory tract infections symptoms in older individuals.

Other foods high in vitamin C include: citrus fruits, red bell peppers, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, butternut squash, papaya, sweet potatoes, and tomatoes.

Vitamin D Deficiency Increases Your Risk of Catching a Cold

Vitamin D is another nutrient that tends to play a role in most diseases, especially infectious ones. It’s a potent antimicrobial agent, producing 200 to 300 different antimicrobial peptides in your body that kill bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

Suboptimal vitamin D levels will significantly impair your immune response and make you far more susceptible to contracting colds, influenza, and other respiratory infections.

The research is quite clear on this point: The higher your vitamin D level, the lower your risk of contracting colds, flu, and other respiratory tract infections.

In the largest and most nationally representative study6 of its kind, involving about 19,000 Americans, those with the lowest vitamin D levels reported having significantly more colds or cases of the flu.

At least five additional studies also show an inverse association between lower respiratory tract infections and vitamin D levels.

The best source for vitamin D is direct sun (UVB) exposure. If neither natural nor artificial sunlight is an option, then using an oral vitamin D3 supplement is recommended. Just remember you also need to increase your vitamin K2 when taking high doses of vitamin D3.

Based on the latest research from GrassrootsHealth, the average adult dose required to reach vitamin D levels of about 40 ng/ml is around 8,000 IUs of vitamin D3 per day. For children, many experts agree they need about 35 IUs of vitamin D per pound of body weight.

These are very general guidelines though. The only way to determine your optimal dose is to get your blood tested. Ideally, you’ll want to maintain a vitamin D level of 50 to 70 ng/ml year-round.

Chicken Soup Really Is a Valid Cold Remedy

Poor immune function tends to be rooted in an unbalanced mix of microorganisms in your digestive system, courtesy of an inappropriate and unbalanced diet that is too high in sugars and too low in healthful fats and beneficial bacteria. Homemade bone broth or “stock” is a valuable remedy, as it’s easily digestible and contains many valuable nutrients that help heal the lining of your intestines. This includes:

  • Easily absorbable minerals, including magnesium, phosphorous, silicon, sulfur, and trace minerals
  • Chondroitin sulfates, glucosamine, and other compounds extracted from the boiled down cartilage, which helps reduce joint pain and inflammation
  • Amino acids such as glycine, proline, and arginine — all of which have anti-inflammatory effects.

Arginine, for example, has been found to be particularly beneficial for the treatment of sepsis7 (whole-body inflammation). Glycine also has calming effects, which may help you sleep better

Chicken soup made with homemade bone broth is excellent for speeding healing and recuperation from illness. You’ve undoubtedly heard the old adage that chicken soup will help cure a cold, and there’s scientific support8 for such a statement. A study9 published over a decade ago found that chicken soup indeed has medicinal qualities, significantly mitigating infection.

In addition to the anti-inflammatory benefits of bone broth, chicken contains a natural amino acid called cysteine, which can thin the mucus in your lungs and make it less sticky so you can expel it more easily. Keep in mind that processed, canned soups will not work as well as the homemade version made from slow-cooked bone broth.

If combating a cold, make the soup hot and spicy with plenty of pepper. The spices will trigger a sudden release of watery fluids in your mouth, throat, and lungs, which will help thin down the respiratory mucus so it’s easier to expel. Black peppercorns also contain high amounts of piperine, a compound with fever-reducing and pain-relieving properties.

Other Foods That Help Strengthen Immune Function

Maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle year-round is the long-term solution to making it through cold and flu season unscathed. Detailed instructions that will help set you the right path can be found in my optimized nutrition and lifestyle plan, which is focused around real food. Importantly, if you feel yourself coming down with a cold or flu, AVOID all sugar, grains, artificial sweeteners, or processed foods.

Sugar is particularly damaging to your immune system — which needs to be ramped up, not suppressed, in order to combat an emerging infection. Other foods besides those mentioned above that can help strengthen your immune response include the following:

Fermented foods help “reseed” your gut with beneficial bacteria (examples include raw kefir, kimchee, miso, pickles, and sauerkraut). Coconut oil contains lauric acid that your body converts into monolaurin, a monoglyceride with the ability to destroy lipid-coated viruses, including influenza, HIV, herpes, and measles, as well as gram-negative bacteria
Raw organic eggs from pastured chickens Apple cider vinegar has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-inflammatory properties. It may also help boost your immune function by raising alkalinity in your body.
Organic grass-fed beef is high in vitamins A and E, omega-3 fatty acids, beta-carotene, zinc, and CLA. CLA (conjugated linoleic acid, a fatty acid), an immune enhancer, is three to five times higher in grass-fed animals than grain-fed animals. Garlic is a potent antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal agent. Ideally consume it raw, and crush it just before eating. A previous article by PreventDisease.com10 gives instructions for a garlic soup that can help destroy most viruses and help you recover a little quicker.
Raw, grass-fed organic milk contains beneficial bacteria and fats that prime your immune system. It’s also a good source of vitamin A and zinc. Pasteurized dairy products are best avoided, as they may actually promote respiratory problems such a recurring colds, congestion, and bronchitis.11 Organic vegetables. Dark leafy greens such as kale, spinach, collard greens, and Swiss chard contain powerful antioxidants, flavonoids, carotenoids, and vitamin C — all of which help protect against infections. Ideally, opt for organic locally grown veggies that are in season, and consider eating a fair amount of them raw. Juicing is an excellent way to get more greens into your diet.

Immune-Boosting Herbs and Supplements

At first signs of a cold, you could also boost your immune function by taking a supplement or extract. The following are examples of immune-boosting herbs and supplements that may be helpful:

Zinc: Research on zinc has shown that when taken within one day of the first symptoms, zinc can cut down the time you have a cold by about 24 hours. Zinc was also found to greatly reduce the severity of symptoms. Suggested dosage: up to 50 mg/day. Zinc was not recommended for anyone with an underlying health condition, like lowered immune function, asthma, or chronic illness. Curcumin, the pigment that gives turmeric its yellow-orange color, is known for its potent anti-inflammatory properties.
Olive leaf extract: Ancient Egyptians and Mediterranean cultures used it for a variety of health-promoting uses and it is widely known as a natural, non-toxic immune system builder. Propolis: A bee resin and one of the most broad-spectrum antimicrobial compounds in the world; propolis is also the richest source of caffeic acid and apigenin, two very important compounds that aid in immune response.
Oregano Oil: The higher the carvacrol concentration, the more effective it is. Carvacrol is the most active antimicrobial agent in oregano oil. Medicinal mushrooms, such as shiitake, reishi, and turkey tail have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiviral properties.
A tea made from a combination of elderflower, yarrow, boneset, linden, peppermint, and ginger; drink it hot and often for combating a cold or flu. It causes you to sweat, which is helpful for eradicating a virus from your system. Echinacea is one of the most widely used herbal medications in Europe to combat colds and infections. One review of more than 700 studies found that using Echinacea can reduce your risk of catching cold by as much as 58 percent.
Elder flower extract: Rich in vitamin C and a wide range of valuable flavonoids, including anthocyanins and quercetin, elder flower has been traditionally used as a tonic to boost immunity. It is also widely known to promote lung and bronchial tract health. Elderberry: In one study,12 elderberry syrup reduced the severity of flu symptoms and shortened their duration by about four days. Elderberry extract is also known for inducing sweating, and helps relieve congestion.

Another Trick to Beat a Cold: Hydrogen Peroxide

Generally speaking, unless you have a complication like pneumonia, medical care is not necessary for the common cold. Definitely avoid antibiotics, as they do not work on viral infections. Rest and attention to your diet — particularly the admonition to avoid sugar and the advice to cook up a batch of homemade chicken soup instead — will help you recover as quickly as possible. If you stick to these recommendations long-term, it will significantly reduce your chances of catching another cold in the future.

I don’t advise over-the-counter medications for the common cold, but one simple treatment you can try that is surprisingly effective against upper respiratory infections is hydrogen peroxide. Below is one of my first videos that is nearly 10 years old now that discusses using peroxide for colds.

While I was in practice, many patients at my Natural Health Center reported curing colds and flu within 12 to 14 hours simply by administering a few drops of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into each ear. A bottle of hydrogen peroxide in 3 percent solution is available at any drug store for a couple of dollars or less. You will hear some bubbling, which is completely normal, and possibly feel a slight stinging sensation. Wait until the bubbling and stinging subside (usually 5 to 10 minutes), then drain onto a tissue and repeat with the other ear.

from:    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/10/26/vitamin-c-foods-fight-common-cold.aspx

Vitamin & Health

Vitamin D Found To Significantly Reduce Cancer, Yet Almost 90 Percent of The World Has Sub-Optimal Levels

by Mae Chan

There’s no doubting the magnitude of scientific evidence showing that the active form of vitamin D shuts down cancer cells. Higher levels of vitamin D are highly correlated with better chances of cancer survival and a new meta-analysis of existing data shows that increasing vitamin D status is associated with a significantly reduced risk of developing lung cancer.

“Almost every disease decreases in frequency and duration as we move towards equatorial populations, and the data shows that there is a minimum of a 1000 percent increase for many diseases in countries furthest from the equator, however we have obtained the same results based on data through populations and vitamin D supplementation,” said Dr. Anthony Petaku who studies the effects of Vitamin D2 and D3 on mutating cells.

Findings from the study, published in Cancer Causes & Control, suggest that the risk of lung cancer may be reduced by 5% for every 10 nmol/L increase of vitamin D intake.

The international research team, who worked in partnership with scientists at DSM, noted that while previous studies have suggested a link between vitamin D status and a variety of cancers, prospective observational studies examining the association between the circulating form of vitamin D, 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D), and lug have so far provided inconsistent findings.

“This is a significant result, as lung cancer is one of the top five cancers diagnosed among men and women, as well as being among the most common causes of death in the world,” commented ProfessorLi-qiang Qin from Soochow University in China — who led the work.

“More research is needed to determine whether a further increase has positive effects in reducing the risk of cancer, however this outcome helps us raise awareness of vitamin D health benefits.”

In a recent study, author Dr Hui Wang, said: “The results suggest vitamin D may influence the prognosis for people with breast cancer, colorectal cancer and lymphoma, in particular.”

Meanwhile, Dr Weiguo Zhang, corresponding author from DSM Nutritional Products, China, noted that 88% of the world’s population has sub-optimal vitamin D levels — adding that studies like the current meta-analysis help to understand how micronutrients affect the human body and how certain conditions can be prevented with increased and targeted intake.

“The new study adds to a larger body of evidence which demonstrates the emerging roles of vitamin D in protecting populations from developing other cancer risks, for instance, colon and breast cancer,” added Dr Manfred Eggersdorfer, Senior Vice President, Nutrition, Science & Advocacy at DSM.

Meta-analysis

Li-qiang and his colleagues performed a dose–response meta-analysis assess whether different levels of vitamin D status were related to an altered risk of lung cancer.

The team analysed data from 13 reports in ten prospective studies, totalling 2,227 lung cancer events.

The meta-analysis found evidence of a non-linear relationship between 25(OH)D and lung cancer — finding a significant 5 % reduction in relative risk of developing lung cancer for each 10 nmol/L increment in 25(OH)D concentrations.

They noted that the greatest reduction in risk was found at a vitamin D status of around 53 nmol/L, which remained protective up to 90 nmol/L.

“Further increases showed no significant association with cancer risk, but scanty data were included in the analyses of high-level 25(OH)D,” the team reported.

“This dose–response meta-analysis of prospective studies suggests that 25(OH)D may be associated with reduced risk of lung cancer, in particular among subjects with vitamin D deficiencies,” they concluded.

Supplementation

“Considering that vitamin D deficiency is a widespread issue all over the world, it is important to ensure that everyone has sufficient levels of this important nutrient,” Dr Wang said. “Physicians need to pay close attention to vitamin D levels in people who have been diagnosed with cancer.”

Professional recommendations for supplementation are made for groups at risk of deficiency including pregnant and breastfeeding women, children under the age of five not fed infant formula, people over 65 and those not exposed to much sun.

It said taking too many vitamin D supplements over a long period of time could cause more calcium to be absorbed than can be excreted, which could lead to kidney damage and softened and weakened bones.

For this reason it’s very important to take a high quality calcium and magensium supplement with vitamin D such as Life Choice Opti-Cal/Mag Complex which also contains Vitamin K2 which in itself also has been found to prevent cancer and also improve bone, cardiovascular, skin, brain, and now prostate health.

Article sources:
springer.com

from:    http://www.riseearth.com/2015/09/vitamin-d-found-to-significantly-reduce.html

The Importance of Being in The Sun

Why avoiding sunshine could kill you

Researchers followed 30,000 women for 20 years and found that those who avoided the sunshine were twice as likely to die

Too little sunshine dramatically increases the risk of dying from all causes because the body is deprived for vitamin D, scientists have found

Too little sunshine dramatically increases the risk of dying from all causes because the body is deprived of vitamin D, scientists have found Photo: REX FEATURES

Women who never sunbathe during the summer are twice as likely to die than those who sunbathe everyday, a major study has shown.

Researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden claim guidelines which advise people to stay out of the sun unless wearing sunscreen may be harming the population, particularly in countries like Britain.

Exposure to ultraviolet radiation from sunlight is often cited as a cause of skin melanoma. The NHS currently recommends avoiding overexposure to the sun to prevent all types of skin cancer.

But the new research, which followed nearly 30,000 women over 20 years, suggests that women who stay out of the sun are at increased risk of skin melanomas and are twice as likely to die from any cause, including cancer.

“The results of this study clearly showed that mortality was about double in women who avoided sun exposure compared to the highest exposure group,” said lead author Dr Pelle Lindqvist.

“Sun exposure advice which is very restrictive in countries with low solar intensity might in fact be harmful for women’s health.

“The mortality rate was increased two-fold among avoiders of sun exposure as compared to those with the highest sun exposure habits.”

It is thought that a lack of vitamin D may to be blame. Vitamin D is created in the body through exposure to sunshine and a deficiency is known to increase the risk of diabetes, tuberculosis, multiple sclerosis and rickets.

Cases of rickets have risen fourfold in the last 15 years as sunscreen has increased in popularity.

Previous studies have shown that vitamin D can increase survival rates for women with breast cancer while deficiencies can signal prostate cancer in men. Low levels of vitamin D have also been linked to more aggressive forms of skin cancer.

Prof Dorothy Bennett, Professor of Cell Biology at St. George’s, University of London, said: “The findings support the consensus that the ideal amount of sun exposure for Northern Europeans is ‘a little’, rather than zero.

“As the authors comment, our bodies need sunlight to make essential vitamin D, which can help us resist some cancer types. Those who normally avoid the sun and/or cover most of their skin are advised to take vitamin D supplements.”

The study looked at 29,518 Swedish women who were recruited from 1990 to 1992 and asked to monitor their sunbathing and tanning salon habits.

After 20 years there had been 2,545, deaths and researchers were surprised to find that women who never sunbathed during the summer months were twice as likely to have died from any cause.

1.5 women in a 100 who had the highest exposure to UV were found to have died, compared with 3 in 100 for women who had avoided sunbathing.

Women who sunbathed in the summer were also 10 per cent less likely to die from skin cancer although those who sunbathed abroad were twice as likely to die from melanoma.

Public Health England says it would be considering the research carefully.

A spokesman said: “Public Health England constantly reviews scientific research and our experts will consider this paper along with other peer reviewed research into this issue as part of that process.”

Dr Andrea Darling, Post-doctoral Research Fellow from the University of Surrey, said there was still strong evidence that skin cancer is caused by sunbathing.

“The findings from Dr Lindqvist’s team are interesting, but it is possible that the women in the study who had high sun exposure differed from the women who had low sun exposure in ways that may explain their reduced cancer risk.”

Yinka Ebo, senior health information officer at Cancer Research UK, said striking a balance was important.

“The reasons behind higher death rates in women with lower sun exposure are still unexplained, as unhealthy lifestyle choices could have played a part,” she added.

“Overexposure to UV radiation from the sun or sunbeds is the main cause of skin cancer.

“We all need some sunshine to make vitamin D for healthy bones. Enjoying the sun safely while taking care not to burn should help most people strike a good balance.”

A spokesman for the Department of Health said: “Skin cancer can have devastating consequences and it is vital that people take steps to protect themselves.

“However, we also recognise the importance of Vitamin D for good health. Most people in the UK can get enough vitamin D from sunlight, but those at risk of vitamin D deficiency should take daily supplements.

“We are working to raise awareness of the symptoms of cancers through the Be Clear on Cancer campaigns. Anybody concerned about symptoms should visit their GP.”

The research was published in The Journal of Internal Medicine.

from:    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/10811734/Why-avoiding-sunshine-could-kill-you.html

That Amazing Vitamin D

Canadian Researchers Discover New Evidence That Vitamin D Shuts Down Cancer Cells

Researchers at McGill University have discovered a molecular basis for the cancer preventive effects of vitamin D, whereby its active form essentially shuts down cancer cells.

People with higher blood levels of vitamin D live significantly longer than people who have low blood levels of the vitamin.

The team, led by McGill professors John White and David Goltzman, of the Faculty of Medicine’s Department of Physiology, discovered that the active form of vitamin D acts by several mechanisms to inhibit both the production and function of the protein cMYC. cMYC drives cell division and is active at elevated levels in more than half of all cancers. Their results are published in the latest edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

For the past several years, there has been considerable interest in the role vitamin D plays in improving health and preventing disease. Previous finding show that low levels of vitamin D have been directly associated with various forms of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Stephen B. Kritchevsky, PhD, Professor of Internal Medicine and Transitional Science at the Wake Forest School of Medicine found a signficant correlation.

“We observed vitamin D insufficiency (defined as blood levels <20 ng/ml), in one third of our study participants. This was associated with nearly a 50 percent increase in the mortality rate in older adults,” said Kritchevsky. “Our findings suggest that low levels of vitamin D may be a substantial public health concern for our nation’s older adults.”

Although vitamin D can be obtained from limited dietary sources and directly from exposure to the sun during the spring and summer months, the combination of poor dietary intake and sun avoidance has created vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency in large proportions of many populations worldwide. It is known that vitamin D has a wide range of physiological effects and that correlations exist between insufficient amounts of vitamin D and an increased incidence of a number of cancer. These correlations are particularly strong for cancers of the digestive tract, including colon cancer, and certain forms of leukemia.

“For years, my lab has been dedicated to studying the molecular mechanisms of vitamin D in human cancer cells, particularly its role in stopping their proliferation,” said Prof. White. “We discovered that vitamin D controls both the rate of production and the degradation of cMYC. More importantly, we found that vitamin D strongly stimulates the production of a natural antagonist of cMYC called MXD1, essentially shutting down cMYC function”.

The team also applied vitamin D to the skin of mice and observed a drop in the level of cMYC and found evidence of a decrease in its function. Moreover, other mice, which lacked the specific receptor for vitamin D, were found to have strongly elevated levels of cMYC in a number of tissues including skin and the lining of the colon. The finding suggests that topical vitamin D may be just as effective as ingested to prevent cancer.

Chemoprevention Through Vitamin D Without The Side Effects

“Taken together, our results show that vitamin D puts the brakes on cMYC function, suggesting that it may slow the progression of cells from premalignant to malignant states and keep their proliferation in check. We hope that our research will encourage people to maintain adequate vitamin D supplementation and will stimulate the development of large, well-controlled cancer chemoprevention trials to test the effects of adequate supplementation,” said Dr. White.

It’s been known that vitamin D can prevent that genetic damage. When vitamin D binds to specific receptors, it sets off a chain of events by which many toxic agents including cancer cells are rendered harmless. However, if there is not enough vitamin D the system can become overwhelmed and cancer can develop. “This is one of the reasons that people living closest to the equator have a much lower incidence (or absence) of specific cancers which consequently increase in locations further from the equator.”

The link between vitamin D intake and protection from cancer dates from the 1940s when Frank Apperly demonstrated a link between latitude and deaths from cancer, and suggested that sunlight gave “a relative cancer immunity”.

Both D3 and D2 precursors are hydroxylated in the liver and kidneys to form 25- hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D), the non-active ‘storage’ form, and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D), the biologically active form that is tightly controlled by the body.

There is growing evidence that 1,25(OH)2D has anticancer effects, but the discovery that non-kidney cells can also hydroxylate 25(OH)D had profound implications, implying that higher 25(OH)D levels could protect against cancer in the local sites.

Theories linking vitamin D deficiency to certain cancers have been tested and confirmed in more than 200 epidemiological studies, and understanding of its physiological basis stems from more than 2,500 laboratory studies, according to epidemiologist Cedric Garland, DrPH, professor of family and preventive medicine at the UC San Diego School of Medicine. “This is the number one chemopreventive substance on the planet and its natural without side effects.”

Dr. Garland’s findings only lend further credence to the mountain of growing evidence that optimal levels of vitamin D are essential for your health. Here are just a few highlights into some of the most noteworthy findings:

* Some 600,000 cases of breast and colorectal cancers could be prevented each year if vitamin D levels among populations worldwide were increased, according to previous research by Dr. Garland and colleagues. And that’s just counting the death toll for two types of cancer.

* Optimizing your vitamin D levels could help you to prevent at least 16 different types of cancer including pancreatic, lung, ovarian, prostate, and skin cancers.

* A large-scale, randomized, placebo-controlled study on vitamin D and cancer showed that vitamin D can cut overall cancer risk by as much as 60 percent! This was such groundbreaking news that the Canadian Cancer Society has actually begun endorsing the vitamin as a cancer-prevention therapy.

* Light-skinned women who had high amounts of long-term sun exposure had half the risk of developing advanced breast cancer (cancer that spreads beyond your breast) as women with lower amounts of regular sun exposure, according to a study in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

* A study by Dr. William Grant, Ph.D., internationally recognized research scientist and vitamin D expert, found that about 30 percent of cancer deaths — which amounts to 2 million worldwide and 200,000 in the United States — could be prevented each year with higher levels of vitamin D.

Inflammation is likely at the root of many cases of vitamin D deficiency, and all chronic degenerative diseases.

Stay Away From Sunscreen

Skin color adapts to sunlight intensities which produce vitamin D or ultraviolet light damage to folic acid. Researchers at the University of Leeds suggest that people with very pale skin may be unable to spend enough time in the sun to make the amount of vitamin D the body needs — while also avoiding sunburn. The key is to stay away from conventional subscreen and use non-toxic alternatives to extend exposure time.

The further you live from the equator, the longer exposure you need to the sun in order to generate vitamin D. Canada, the UK and most U.S. states are far from the equator and the logic of using sunscreen is quickly becoming illogical even in scientific circles.

Unlike fads that sizzled and fizzled, the evidence for Vitamin D’s health benefits is now strong and keeps growing. If it bears out, it will challenge one of medicine’s most fundamental beliefs: that people need to coat themselves with sunscreen whenever they’re in the sun. Doing that may actually contribute to far more cancer deaths than it prevents, some researchers think.

The vitamin is D, nicknamed the “sunshine vitamin” because the skin makes it from ultraviolet rays. Sunscreen blocks its production, but dermatologists and health agencies have long preached that such lotions are needed to prevent skin cancer. Now some scientists are questioning that advice. The reason is that vitamin D increasingly seems important for preventing and even treating many types of cancer.

  • Comprehensive scientific reviews indicate that 83% of 785 sunscreen products offer inadequate protection from the sun, or contain ingredients with significant safety concerns. Only 17% of the products on the market are both safe and effective, blocking both UVA and UVB radiation, remaining stable in sunlight, and containing few if any ingredients with significant known or suspected health hazards. The assessment is based on a review of nearly 400 scientific studies, industry models of sunscreen efficacy, and toxicity and regulatory information housed in nearly 60 government, academic, and industry databases.
  • Many products lack UVA protection. Fully 12% of high SPF sunscreens (SPF of at least 30) protect only from sunburn (UVB radiation), and do not contain ingredients known to protect from UVA radiation, the sun rays linked to skin damage and aging, immune system problems, and potentially skin cancer. FDA does not require that sunscreens guard against UVA radiation.
  • Sunscreens break down in the sun. Parodoxically, many sunscreen ingredients break down in the sun, in a matter of minutes or hours, and then let UV radiation through to the skin. Our analyses show that 54% of products on the market contain ingredients that may be unstable alone or in combination, raising questions about whether these products last as long as the label says. FDA has not proposed requirements for sunscreen stability.

About the Author

Mae Chan holds degrees in both physiology and nutritional sciences. She is also blogger and and technology enthusiast with a passion for disseminating information about health.

from:   http://themindunleashed.org/2014/02/canadian-researchers-discover-new-evidence-vitamin-d-shuts-cancer-cells.html

Know Your Sunscreen

7 Important Issues You Need To Know About Sunscreen

By NaturalNews

Ask somebody about sunscreen and you’re likely to receive an earful of disinformation from a person who has been repeatedly misinformed by health authorities and the mainstream media. Almost nothing you hear about sunscreen from traditional media channels is accurate. So here’s a quick guide to the 7 most important things you need to know about sunscreen, sunlight and vitamin D:

#1) The FDA refuses to allow natural sunscreen ingredients to be used in sunblock / sunscreen products.

It’s true: If you create a truly natural sunscreen product using exotic botanicals with powerful sunscreen properties, you will never be able to market it as a “sunscreen” product. That’s because the FDA decides what can be used as sunscreen and what can’t, regardless of what really works in the real world. And there are really only two natural ingredients the FDA has allowed to be sold as sunscreen: Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.

Any other non-chemical sunscreen ingredients, if sold as “sunscreen,” would be considered mislabeled by the FDA and result in your products being confiscated… even if they offer fantastic sunscreen protection!

Not surprisingly, this whole monopoly over sunscreen chemicals is designed to protect the profits of the chemical companies while marginalizing the natural product companies which could easily formulate far better solutions. I have personally spoken to the founders of several health product companies who have figured out amazing sunscreen formulations using nothing but natural botanicals, but the FDA won’t let them market their products as sunscreen products! It’s just another example of the FDA standing in the way of health innovation.

#2) Nearly all conventional sunscreen products contain cancer-causing chemicals.

Read the ingredients list of any sunscreen product sold at Wal-Mart, or Walgreens, or any other mainstream store.

You will not be able to pronounce most of the chemicals found in the ingredients list. That’s because most sunscreen products are formulated with cancer-causing fragrance chemicals, parabens, harsh alcohols, toxic chemical solvents and petroleum oils. A typical sunscreen product is actually a chemical assault on your body. That’s why research shows that using sunscreen actually causes more cancer than it prevents (http://www.naturalnews.com/023317_s…)

#3) In the US where over 70% of the population is vitamin D deficiency, sunscreen actually blocks vitamin D production.

Vitamin D deficiency is perhaps the most widespread vitamin deficiency in North America. According to the research, 70 percent of whites are deficient in vitamin D, and up to 97 percent of blacks are deficient (http://www.naturalnews.com/030598_v…).

Chronic vitamin D deficiency promotes cancer (http://www.naturalnews.com/031560_v…), winter flu and infections, depression, osteoporosis and hormonal imbalances. Depending on whom you believe, vitamin D alone can prevent anywhere from 50% to nearly 80% of all cancers (http://www.naturalnews.com/021892.html).

By blocking vitamin D production in the skin, sunscreen products actually contribute to cancer-promoting nutritional deficiencies.

This doesn’t mean you should never wear a sunscreen product, of course. If your skin is really pale and you’re planning a day on the beach in Hawaii, you will obviously benefit from some level of sun protection using a truly natural sunscreen product. But an informed health-conscious person would try to allow their skin to achieve a natural, healthy tan (yes, a tan truly is healthy if it’s combined with good nutrition, see below) through sensible exposure levels that activate vitamin D production in the skin.

#4) You can boost your internal sun resistance by changing what you eat.

Here’s the real secret about sun exposure that no one in conventional medicine is talking about (because, as usual, they are woefully ignorant about nutrition): You can boost your internal sunscreen by eating antioxidant-rich foods and super foods.

The supplement astaxanthin, for example, is very well known for boosting your skin’s natural resistance to sunburn. Its fat-soluble carotenoids are actually transported to skin cells where they protect those cells from UV exposure.

The more natural antioxidants you have in your diet, the more sunlight your skin will be able to handle without burning. Nearly everyone mistakenly believes that a person’s sunlight burn response is purely a genetic factor. They’re wrong. You can radically improve your resistance to UV exposure through radical dietary changes.

I’m a great example of this, actually, as I used to burn in just 20 – 30 minutes of sunlight when I was on a junk food diet years ago. But now, as someone who eats superfoods and high-end nutritional supplements every day, I can spend hours in the sun and will only turn slightly red (which fades a few hours later and does not result in a burn or skin peeling).

Except for one time on an all-day visit to a water park, I have not worn sunscreen in over 8 years. I spend a large amount of time in the sun, and I have absolutely no concerns whatsoever about skin cancer. My skin, most people tell me, looks significantly younger than my biological age. That’s not from sunscreen; it’s from nutrition. Sun exposure does not make your skin “age” if you follow a high-nutritional density diet.

The below video is about “The Truth About Sunlight, Cancer and Vitamin D”
by the Health Ranger from Natural News.

#5) UV exposure alone does not cause skin cancer.

It is a complete medical myth that “UV exposure causes skin cancer.” This false idea is a total fabrication by the ignorant medical community (dermatologists) and the profit-driven sunscreen companies.

The truth is actually more complicated: Skin cancer can only be caused when UV exposure is combined with chronic nutritional deficiencies that create skin vulnerabilities.
To create skin cancer, in other words, you have to eat a junk food diet, avoid protective antioxidants, and then also experience excessive UV exposure. All three of those elements are required. Conventional medicine completely ignores the dietary influences and focuses entirely on just one factor: Sunscreen vs. no sunscreen. This is a one-dimensional approach to the issue that’s grossly oversimplified to the point of being misleading.

The medical industry, it seems, does not want people to figure out they can literally eat their way to healthier skin. It’s amazing, actually: Your skin is made entirely out of the food you eat, so how could your diet not affect your skin health? Yet no one in conventional medicine — not the dermatologists, not the doctors and not the health regulators — has the intellectual honesty to admit that what you eat largely determines how your skin reacts to UV exposure.

#6) Not all “natural” sunscreen products are really natural.

Be careful when shopping for so-called “natural” sunscreen products. While there are some good ones out there, many are just examples of greenwashing, where they use terms like “natural” or “organic” but still contain loads of synthetic chemicals anyway.

A good guide for checking on sunscreen products is the Environmental Working Group guide (EWG) at: http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/

Some of the products that are truly natural include Loving Naturals sunscreen and Badger All Natural Sunscreen. Read the ingredients labels to see for yourself. Don’t use any sunscreen product containing ingredients that sound like chemicals:
• Methyl…
• Propyl…
• Butyl…
• Ethyl…
• Trieth…
• Dieth…etc.
Always buy unscented sunscreen unless for some reason you just enjoy coating your skin with artificial perfume chemicals. A typical sunscreen product is made with over a dozen cancer-causing fragrance chemicals, and they’re absorbed right through your skin. Most sunscreens, when applied as directed, are really just toxic chemical baths that heavily burden your liver and can give you cancer.

#7) Many “chemical free” sunscreens are loaded with chemicals.

Search Amazon.com for “chemical free natural sunscreen” and you’ll see a listing for:
Jason Natural Cosmetics – Earth’s Best Sun Block Chemical Free, 4 oz cream
Click on the product and you’ll find a listing of its ingredients which includes: C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sorbitan Isostearate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Ethyl Macadamiate, Calcium Starch Octenylsuccinate, Stearalkonium Hectorite
So how are those not chemicals? Ethylhexyl Palmitate is NOT a chemical? Who are these people kidding? The Amazon.com description (title) of this product is false and misleading. In all fairness, however, this product title looks like it was added into the Amazon.com system by the vendor and not the Jason company itself. But it’s an example of how the information you see from online vendors can often be misleading.
Always read the ingredients of any sunscreen product before using it. Don’t poison yourself with sunscreen!

Beware the disinfo minefield surrounding sunscreen products

Perhaps more with sunscreen than any other personal care product, the “official” information distributed through the mainstream media is hopelessly misleading (if not downright false). Remarkably, no one in the media or the government is even willing to admit that fragrance chemicals are bad for your health. Similarly, no one is willing to admit that the chemicals you put on your skin get ABSORBED by your skin.

Without those two truths being acknowledged right up front, the rest of whatever they say about sunscreen is worthless babble. Any honest talk about sunscreen must acknowledge the simple truth that the chemicals you put on your skin get absorbed into your skin, and that most sunscreen products are made out of a chemical cocktail of cancer-causing substances.

This is the truth about sunscreen that both the sunscreen industry and the cancer industry doesn’t want you to hear. It’s the dirty little secret of sunscreen: The more you use, the more you CAUSE cancer in your body! (And the more money the cancer centers make “treating” your cancer with yet more deadly chemicals known as chemotherapy.)

So buyer beware. Sunscreen products are a minefield of lies, fraud and disinformation designed to keep you ignorant of the importance of sun exposure as well as the health risks associated with using cancer-causing chemicals on your skin.

Stick with truly natural sunscreen products (when needed) and try to build up a healthy tan while consuming large quantities of superfoods and antioxidants in your diet. Consider taking astaxanthin or other fat-soluble nutrients on a regular basis. Engage in daily juicing of fresh fruits and vegetables which are loaded with living nutrients. Time your sun exposure to build up a healthy tan so that you don’t need sunscreen at all. Contrary to all the misinformation we’ve all been fed, a healthy tan is actually a good sign that you’re achieving adequate vitamin D synthesis in your own skin

from:    ttp://wakeup-world.com/2011/07/11/7-most-important-issues-you-need-to-know-about-sunscreen/