Good news sun worshippers, research from around the world has concluded that a dose of sunny weather really is good for us.
While it’s well known that sun exposure without SPF can result in skin cancer and badly aged skin, researchers from various global institutes have found a whole host of good reasons to get in the summer spirit.
As well as skin creating vitamin D from sunlight, which is essential for healthy bones, scientists have also found sunshine allows the body to produce feel good chemical serotonin and also nitric oxide, which helps protect our cardiovascular system. Previous research published in the Environmental Science & Technology journal found that just five minutes of exercise outdoors can make you feel happier and less stressed.
It’s also been found that 20 to 30 minutes of early morning fitness in sunshine can help lower body fat. If you’ve been putting off joining a gym, then now is definitely the time to take your workouts outside.
As mentioned above, skin cancer and sunshine is a known link for those who lay in the sun, but were you aware that vitamin D can protect against colon, kidney and breast cancer? The US National Cancer Institute found people exposed to high levels of sunshine were less likely to die from breast and colon cancer, as well as bladder, womb, esophagus and stomach cancer. Make sure you’re wearing at least SPF 30 though when lounging around in the great outdoors, and take regular breaks in the shade.
Vitamin D also has positive effects on fertility, boosting levels of progesterone and estrogen and regulating menstrual cycles. As well as impacting the female sex hormones, sunshine also improves levels of testosterone, the male sex hormone.
Plus the wonder vitamin can improve memory, and protect against dementia. So what are you waiting for? The next time the sun breaks between the clouds, grab some SPF and get outside!