Sunlight exposure

A balanced amount of sun exposure is seen as important to general health[6][7]. A lack of vitamin D, which is typical for lack of sun exposure, is linked to rickets[11], osteomalacia[12], thyroid issues[13], depression[14], seasonal affective disorder[3], breast and other cancers[1][2], obesity[15], Multiple sclerosis (MS)[5] and more. Too much sun exposure can lead to skin cancer[9], reduced immune system functioning[8]. High lifetime cumulative UV exposure is responsible for significant age-associated dryness, wrinkling, elastin and collagen damage, freckling, age spots and other cosmetic changes[10]. Long-term sunlight exposure is known to be associated with skin aging, immune suppression, and eye diseases such as cataracts and macular degeneration[4]. Short-term over-exposure is the cause of sunburn, snow blindness, and solar retinopathy.

Rate your health contributing behaviour so we can help you improve.

0.0%
I do not agree with this statement. I somewhat agree. This may sometimes be representative. I agree with this statement. It describes my situation very well.
I am familiar with UV types and what SPF levels for sunscreen to use.
Before travelling to a new sunny place I check the UV index there.
I wear proper clothing, use protective sunscreen when the sun is strong.
I get healthy doses of sun throughout the year.
I avoid sunbeds.
I go outside most days and get a little sun (or have D-vitamin supplements)
I make sure I never get sun burns.
Before going to a place with stronger sun I gradually adjust my exposure.
Login to be able to save your rating. As a logged in user we can aggregate your ratings and give you a better overview. The system will also be able to help you follow up on areas to improve.

Beginner   Intermediate   Advanced   All

Suggestions from the community

    Discuss this health aspect with others. Ask questions and get answers.

      Your private notes on sunlight exposure

      Send me reminder on email

      Category: Environmental health

      Research
      • [1] John E, Schwartz G, Koo J, Van Den Berg D, Ingles S (June 15, 2005). "Sun Exposure, Vitamin D Receptor Gene Polymorphisms, and Risk of Advanced Prostate Cancer". Cancer Research 65 (12): 5470–5479. doi:10.1158/0008-5472.can-04-3134.
      • [2] Egan K, Sosman J, Blot W (February 2, 2005). "Sunlight and Reduced Risk of Cancer: Is The Real Story Vitamin D?". J Natl Cancer Inst 97 (3): 161–163. doi:10.1093/jnci/dji047.
      • [3] Mead MN (April 2008). "Benefits of sunlight: a bright spot for human health". Environmental Health Perspectives 116 (4): A160–A167. doi:10.1289/ehp.116-a160. PMC 2290997. PMID 18414615.
      • [4] Lucas RM, Repacholi MH, McMichael AJ (June 2006). "Is the current public health message on UV exposure correct?". Bulletin of the World Health Organization 84 (6): 485–491. doi:10.2471/BLT.05.026559. PMC 2627377. PMID 16799733.
      • [5] Ascherio A, Munger KL (June 2007). "Environmental risk factors for multiple sclerosis. Part II: Noninfectious factors". Annals of Neurology 61 (6): 504–513. doi:10.1002/ana.21141. PMID 17492755.
      • [6] Wolpowitz D, Gilchrest BA (February 2006). "The vitamin D questions: how much do you need and how should you get it?". Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 54 (2): 301–317. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2005.11.1057. PMID 16443061.
      • [7] International Agency for Research on Cancer Working Group on artificial ultraviolet (UV) light and skin cancer (March 2007). "The association of use of sunbeds with cutaneous malignant melanoma and other skin cancers: A systematic review". International Journal of Cancer 120 (5): 1116–1122. doi:10.1002/ijc.22453. PMID 17131335.
      • [8] Matsumu, Y.; Ananthaswamy, H. N. (2004). "Toxic effects of ultraviolet radiation on the skin". Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology 195 (3): 298–308. doi:10.1016/j.taap.2003.08.019. PMID 15020192.
      • [9] Wolpowitz D, Gilchrest BA (February 2006). "The vitamin D questions: how much do you need and how should you get it?". Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 54 (2): 301–317. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2005.11.1057. PMID 16443061.
      • [10] American Academy of Dermatology. Position statement on vitamin D. November 1, 2008.
      • [11] Lulseged S, Fitwi G (1999) Vitamin D deficiency rickets: socio-demographic and clinical risk factors in children seen at a referral hospital in Addis Ababa. East Afr Med J 76:457–461. View
      • [12] Do Carmo Sitta, M., Cassis, S. V. A., Horie, N. C., Moyses, R. M. A., Jorgetti, V., & Garcez-Leme, L. E. (2009). Osteomalacia and Vitamin D Deficiency in the Elderly. Clinics (Sao Paulo, Brazil), 64(2), 156–158. doi:10.1590/S1807-59322009000200015 View
      • [13] Mackawy, A. M. H., Al-ayed Bushra Mohammed, & Al-rashidi Bashayer Mater. (2013). Vitamin D Deficiency and Its Association with Thyroid Disease. International Journal of Health Sciences, 7(3), 267–275. View
      • [14] Anglin RE, Samaan Z, Walter SD, McDonald SD. Vitamin D deficiency and depression in adults: systematic review and meta-analysis. Br J Psychiatry. 2013;202:100–107. View
      • [15] A.T. Drincic et al. Volumetric dilution, rather than sequestration best explains the low vitamin D status of obesity. Obesity. Volume 20, July 2012, p. 1444. Doi:10.1038/oby.2011.404
      View next random