Naturopathic Tip of the Month: Sun Protection
Although the sun provides beneficial amounts of Vitamin D, we still need to protect ourselves. Everyone needs to apply sunscreen of at least an SPF of 15 or higher on a daily basis to all parts of their body (even your ears and lips!). Use a non-greasy formula to prevent acne formation. Remember, you can still burn on a cloudy day. Studies have shown that even two or more bad burns as a child can increase your odds of developing skin cancer as an adult.
Prevention of a burn is key, but if you do end up with too much sun here are a few tips to decrease the pain and speed healing times:
- Aloe Vera Gel can be thinly applied to sunburns to relieve discomfort and speed the rate of healing. Squeezing the gel directly out of the plant is best. When purchasing products with aloe gel try to avoid products with mineral oil, paraffin wax, alcohol and colouring. These agents can keep the heat in, be irritating to the skin and prolong healing.
- Drink plenty of fluids as the sun dehydrates the body (Upwards of 2 L of water).
- Eat raw fruits and vegetables to supply your body with fresh vitamins and minerals to heal the damaged skin cells.