Take Sunshine Breaks!

Light will become a potent medicine in the not too distant future.

The effects of light in health and disease have been observed and studied since the time of Hippocrates (most likely before then).

We will concern ourselves with 2 basic types for now:

  1. Natural Light
  2. Artificial Light.

Natural light is of course the Sun in all its glory.

It is nature’s number 1 medicine without it, our bodies have to compensate in many ways that leave us less than optimal. Optimal Sunlight exposure creates optimal health.

For decades now we have been erroneously informed that the Sun is bad and you need to protect your skin and your eyes. How wrong we were! We need the right amount of Sunlight exposure to our eyes and skin. Understand that I’m not advocating staring at the Sun or staying out until you burn yet the fact remains 90% of us don’t get enough proper Sun exposure.

What is proper Sun exposure? First, exposing your eyes to the Sun without sunglasses, contacts or glasses allowing your eyes to absorb the full spectrum of wavelengths of the Sun thereby initiating a cascade of wonderful events through the eyes to the brain leading to optimized neurotransmitter production and function especially dopamine and balancing of hormones. Second as much of your skin as you can comfortably expose and yes naked would be best.

Sunlight through glass or plastic is not good as important wavelengths are filtered out. It is the full spectrum of these wavelengths not isolated forms that provide all the necessary information for our body to optimize. I remember reading a study done in Africa where 2 tribes were observed for cancer rates where 1 tribe wore sunglasses and the other did not. The cancer rates in the sunglasses wearing tribe were much much higher.

Additionally it is now believed by some researchers that the common skin cancer seen in the left forearms of truck drivers is due to the Sun exposure through the side window not due to direct Sun exposure.

Interestingly the wavelength spectrum changes throughout the day which is why several Sun breaks are needed during each and every day.

Sun Breaks: The way I explain it to my patients is that morning sun gets your brain and hormones going plus setting the stage for a great sleep so Sunrise to about 10 AM. Noon to 3 pm for at least 15 minutes or more to make some Vitamin D and watch the Sun set to optimize sleep and relaxation.

We know much more about how important the Sun is from research done in China because in Beijing there is very little Sun exposure due to pollution and their rates of all kinds of maladies is dramatically increasing. So when some of these people are sent to the countryside where much more Sun exposure is available, improvements are seen.

Bottom line: Take& Enjoy At Least 3 Sun Breaks a Day!