3 Tips to Traveling with Healthier Sun Exposure September 13 2015

There are 3 fundamental keys to leveraging the sun for maximum health. Too little sunshine, as revealed by more and more research, is not good for our health. Sunshine boosts our mood, helps us sleep better, and can lower our blood pressure. It can also give us a water-soluble form of Vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is vital for growing strong bones and supporting a healthy immune system. You could say that sunshine, along with food, water and air, is one of natures most fundamental wellness protocols. 

The 3 most effective ways to balance your sun exposure to maximize it's healthy benefits and mitigate over-exposure which can lead to wrinkles and other skin issues are really pretty simple. 

1. Know you skin color.

    Skin color, or you level of melanin has a direct link to how much sun you can handle. Melanin also screens UV rays, so you actually need more to reap the healthier benefits of the sun. 

    2. Check your shadow.

    If your shadow is shorter than you are, chances are there is enough UVB in the sun to make vitamin D. It is also helpful to have lots of skin exposed. The more the better. The angle of the sun has a lot to do with how much UVB is present. UVB is primarily responsible for vitamin D production. If you want to be more scientific about it, click to this government website to calculate the angle of the sun in your area. Look on your chart for the times of day where the altitude of the sun is above 50º and you will see the optimal times to absorb UVB, the primary factor for vitamin D from the sun. 

    3. Know the UV Index or how strong the sun is.

    The strength of the sun can shift your safer and healthier time in the sunThe best way to do this is to carry around a UV monitor and check it from time to time – as conditions change, or times of the day change, the UV Index will change. Unfamiliar strength of the sun is the most common the reason people get so sunburned when they vacation. The strength of the sun can be more intense around water and snow. 

      Wearable sun monitors like SunFriend® will keep track of the strength of the sun. All you have to do is plug in your skin color and then get out of the sun or cover up when your SunFriend flashes letting you know you have had enough sun for the day!