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5 healthy effects of the sun

  1. Good news: enough sunlight not only makes you happy, but also more vital. Five sunny health effects.

1. Less chance of depression

  1. Of the over 50s, 13 to 15 percent have depressive complaints. Sunlight may be able to prevent this, the VU University Medical Center discovered. It turns out that elderly people with depression have a much lower vitamin D level in their blood than elderly people who feel cheerful. We produce about two-thirds of our vitamin D supply with the help of the sun - the rest we get from our diet. Those who regularly cycle, walk or work in the garden are less likely to get a vitamin D deficiency. In addition, the so-called â € blue lightâ € ™ from the sun â € “part of the visible light of the sun, which contains all the colors of the rainbow - and the UV rays are also likely to have a positive effect on you. mood.

2. Less bone loss, better fitness

  1. A deficiency of vitamin D can â € “especially in postmenopausal women â €“ lead to osteoporosis and ultimately fractures. Your muscles can also become weaker. This increases the risk of falling. Moreover, you are more tired with less strong muscles. Sufficient sunlight on your skin ensures sufficient vitamin D in your blood. And that in turn ensures healthier bones, stronger muscles and better stamina. The older you are, the more difficult it is for your skin to produce vitamin D. Spending enough time outside every day is therefore becoming increasingly important.

3. Less chance of cancers multiple sclerosis

  1. Several scientific studies show that people who regularly spend time in the sun have a lower risk of colon cancer. There is strong evidence that this also applies to the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple sclerosis (MS), prostate and breast cancer. This is partly because you produce vitamin D in the sun. A higher vitamin D level probably reduces the risk of these cancers and MS. But that's not all. The blue light of the sun has a beneficial effect on our day and night rhythm, so on how much and how well you sleep and how awake and fit you are during the day. That may also play a role in the prevention of these diseases. For a good day-and-night rhythm it is important that you catch enough light especially in the morning. This is not about (sun) light on your skin, but the (sun) light that you get in through your eyes. Occasional intense sunbathing on holiday does not help; you really need a daily dose of at least an hour a day.

4. Smoother skin

  1. Psoriasis is one of the most common skin conditions in the world. In the Netherlands, around 350,000 people suffer from it. Their skin is red and scaly and they are very itchy. The sun usually brings relief. "Almost everyone with psoriasis who goes to Southern Europe and tans sensibly will come back with smoother skin," says dermatologist Han van der Rhee. He is one of the foremost experts on the relationship between sunlight and health. He wrote the books Zonnen mag and Zonwijzer about this. "In people with psoriasis, the immune system is disturbed. The ultraviolet rays from the sun have a beneficial effect on this. It also calms eczema."

5. Lower blood pressure

  1. There is increasing evidence that the sun can lower your blood pressure for a long time. Scientists determined that this is not due to the relaxing effect of the sun, but due to the ultraviolet rays (UV-A). When subjects lay down on a tanning bed with only heat radiation, their blood pressure appeared to have not decreased significantly afterwards. If they went to a tanning bed with heat and UV radiation, their blood pressure was significantly lower for a few hours afterwards. This effect appears to last even longer with three times UV irradiation per week.

Are you getting enough sun?

  1. For healthy bones and against a vitamin D deficiency, the advice is: 15 to 30 minutes a day in the Dutch summer sun. Preferably between 12:00 and 15:00 with your head, hands and forearms uncovered (so not smeared with sunscreen). This sun advice to take full advantage of the beneficial effects of the sun is fairly new. Of course, the following applies: if you burn easily, you must get out of the sun or lubricate.

  2. For healthy bones and against a vitamin D deficiency, the advice is: 15 to 30 minutes a day in the Dutch summer sun. Preferably between 12:00 and 15:00 with your head, hands and forearms uncovered (so not smeared with sunscreen). This sun advice to take full advantage of the beneficial effects of the sun is fairly new. Of course money remains



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