A look at the health benefits of Sunshine : why we should consider putting down the sunscreen and enjoying the sun.
At this time of year we all sigh a big sigh of relief as the winter cold starts to make way from the spring sunshine.
Heres a few good reasons to get out there and enjoy that sunshine :
Here’s what you get during those minutes you’re out there, according to new reports: an instant endorphin surge and drop in blood pressure, regulation of hunger hormones that may help you keep weight off, and key vitamin D synthesis that alters the expression of at least 1000 genes responsible for everything from controlling how quickly your bones age to how fast you bounce back from tough workouts to how fertile you are.
- Sunshine boosts our white blood cells (called Lymphocytes) which boosts our immune system by defending against infections.
- Sunshine improves Vitamin D status which also supports our immune systems and bone health (men and women start to loose bone mass after 30, but maintaining vitamin D levels can help slow this decline and reduce the risk of fractures later in life) amongst other things.
- Vitamin D rich foods include – salmon, sardines, egg yolk, shrimp, shitake mushrooms, ricotta, cod liver oil. Its a good idea to get your Vitamin D levels checked at the doctors and if deficient supplementing with Vitamin D3 1000-2000IU / day for 3 months then re-test to see where your levels are at (but more importantly get out in the sunshine). It is very very common for a deficiency to be present.
- Clothing, excess body fat, sunscreen and melanin can interfere with Vitamin D3 synthesis from the sun.
- Sunshine supports sleep. As humans we are programmed to be outdoors during the sunlight hours and indoors during the night. Sunshine helps to balance our Circadian Rhythms which supports alertness during the day and deep restful sleep at night.