They call Vitamin D the feel good vitamin for good reasons. Beyond the benefits, Vitamin D increases the amount of oxygen our blood transports around our bodies. No wonder we feel better after a good dose of sunlight! Most of us are aware of the damaging effects of cholesterol on arteries. Thia can cause serious heart disease. However, now science is telling us that our bodies need ultraviolet light to break down cholesterol. In addition, a study was conducted by researchers from London’s King’s College where 2,160 women from the age of 18 to 79 were involved. It was intended to measure the presence of telomeres, which are measurements for age located within the DNA. As we age, our telomeres get shorter and we become more prone to contract a disease.
Scientists discovered that telomeres were longer when there were higher levels of Vitamin D present. This indicates that Vitamin D slows down the aging of DNA. A diet that includes cereals, fish and eggs will only provide you with a small amount of the Vitamin D you need. We must get nearly 90% of the body’s requirements from exposure of sunlight on our skin. Just 20 minutes of safe sun exposure a day will do it.
So just how safe is it to spend time in the sun? It’s perfectly safe to bask in the sunshine until your skin has a “healthy glow”. If you are using a good sunscreen you can enjoy the sun a little longer than you would be able to without it, yet not damage your skin. With all of the hype about skin damage and melanoma from the anti-sun campaigns we see today, some people are showing signs of Vitamin D deficiencies. Also, as we get older, our bodies find it harder to absorb the vitamins we do get in your diet.