Tag Archives: sun exposure

Regular Sunny Holidays Predict Better Prognosis in Melanoma Patients.

By: Marc Sorenson, Sunlight Institute–

To those of us who support regular sun exposure, a study of epochal importance has just been published in the medical journal PLoS One. The lead author, Dr. Sara Gandini, has also performed previous research showing the efficacy of sunlight in enhancing health, and has brought to light that many factors not related to sunlight are the real causes of melanoma.[1]

In her latest publication, she and her colleagues show that holidays in sunny areas were significantly correlated to thinner melanomas,[2] meaning that the cancers were less likely to progress and spread. There was a dose-response protection against thicker melanomas; in other words, the greater the number of weeks of sunny holidays, the greater less the risk of thicker melanomas. This correlation existed only for women. The good news, however, is that for both sexes,recurrence of excised melanomas was reduced an average of 70% in those who spent the greatest number of days in the sunlight.

I and many others have said for years that not only does sunlight not cause melanoma, regular non-burning sunlight is protective against contracting melanoma. This new research corroborates that fact.

A similar study on melanoma thickness and the risk of relapse was done in 2009 by Julia Newton-Bishop and colleagues.[3] In that research, it was shown that subjects with higher vitamin D levels had thinner melanomas and a greater survival prognosis. Nevertheless, the results were not nearly as impressive as the study by Gandini, et al. Sunlight exposure per se appears to be superior to vitamin D levels per se in protecting against melanoma.

Sunlight exposure is the best and most natural way to produce large quantities of vitamin D in the human body, and we are learning that sunlight produces many health benefits beyond vitamin D production. This present research is another step forward in bringing sunlight back to its rightful position as mankind’s best friend.


[1] Gandini, S, et al. Meta-analysis of risk factors for cutaneous melanoma: I-3. European Journal of Cancer  2005;41:28–44.

[2] Gandini S, De Vries E, Tosti G, Botteri E, Spadola G, et al. Sunny Holidays before and after Melanoma Diagnosis Are Respectively Associated with Lower Breslow Thickness and Lower Relapse Rates in Italy. PLoS One 2013;8:e78820.

[3] Newton-Bishop JA, Beswick S, Randerson-Moor J, Chang YM, Affleck P, et al. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 levels are associated with breslow thickness at presentation and survival from melanoma. J Clin Oncol 2009;27:5439-44.


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Sunlight exposure correlates to a reduced risk of ADHD

By: Marc Sorenson, Sunlight Institute–

Researchers have found that sunlight exposure correlates to a decreased risk of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Researchers assessed the relationship between the prevalence of ADHD and the intensity of sunlight in various nations and in US states.[1]After adjusting for birth weights, infant mortality and other relevant factors, they found that the greater the sunlight exposure, the less was the prevalance of ADHD. It is obvious that sunlight exposure was able to mitigate ADHD.

It is interesting that the authors suggested that that the mechanism by which sunlight accomplishes this improvement could be a positive change in the circadian rhythm, a factor that had previously been associated with ADHD. It was also interesting that the researchers did not mention vitamin D production by sunlight, since several studies have shown an association between low vitamin D and diseases such as Alzheimer’s, brain development in baby rats, autism, anxiety and depression. Rats born to vitamin D deficient mothers also have permanently damaged brains into adulthood,[2]and exhibit hyperactivity.[3]In addition, recent research shows that adult vitamin D deficiency leads to behavioral and brain alterations in mice.[4]

Considering the aforementioned effects of vitamin D deficiency on the brain, it is not surprising that sunlight, which stimulates the skin to produce vitamin D, correlates to a reduced risk of ADHD. It is a mystery that the authors did not consider vitamin d production as the mechanism that leads to the improvement.

Let’s soak up some sunlight, get rid of hyperactivity and start focusing on those things that are important—a good idea for both children and adults!


[1]Martijn Arns, Kristiaan B. van der Heijden, L. Eugene Arnold, and J. Leon Kenemans. Geographic Variation in the Prevalence of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: The Sunny Perspective. Biol Psychiatry 2013;15;74:585-90.

[2]McGrath, J. et al.  Vitamin D3-implications for brain development.  J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 2004;89-90:557-60.
[3]Burne TH, Becker A, Brown J, Eyles DW, Mackay-Sim A, McGrath JJ. Transient prenatal Vitamin D deficiency is associated with hyperlocomotion in adult rats. Behav Brain Res 2004;;154:549-55
[4]Groves NJ, Kesby JP, Eyles DW, McGrath JJ, Mackay-Sim A, Burne TH. Adult vitamin D deficiency leads to behavioral and brain neurochemical alterations in C57BL/6J and BALB/c mice. Behav Brain Res 2013;15;241:120-31.
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The Indian Press says, “Bring on the Sunshine.”

By: MarcSorenson, Sunlight Institute–

In so many countries, sunlight is looked on with fear, and the press is constantly promoting that fear by warning that sun exposure in causing melanoma—an idea that is patently false.

Fortunately, in India not everyone is buying the sunscare propaganda. It is not uncommon to see articles in the Indian press expressing the concern that Indians, many of who have adopted the indoor lifestyles of western countries, are becoming severely deficient in vitamin D due to lack of sunlight exposure. One of those articles was recently published in the online version of India Today. The author, Nalini Ravichandran, correctly points out: “Scientific studies have proven that Vitamin D is like the ignition key to your car; the car won’t run unless you turn the key and ignite the engine. So get started in the right direction, before it gets too late.” In other words, seek the sunlight!

The author also laments the fact that 80% of Indians are now vitamin-D deficient. The only thing lacking in this excellent piece is a discussion of all the benefits of sunlight beyond vitamin D.

I applaud the efforts of the Indian press to bring the truth about sunlight to their populace. I have seen several articles in the past year all extolling the benefits of sunlight. Now, if only we could get the western press to catch up!

Read the article.

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Load up on Sunlight this Fall.

By: Marc Sorenson, Sunlight Institute–

A great new article by Michelle Goldstein in Natural News states that fall is a great time to soak up the sunlight. I agree. Although the amount of vitamin D produced by sunlight exposure is reduced compared to the amount produced in summer, there is still the production of nitric oxide, which lowers blood pressure and reduces cardiovascular disease, and the production of endorphins and serotonin, which are natural mood elevators.

The article points out that the best time to get sun is between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm, exactly the opposite of the advice given by the Powers of Darkness—those who would ruin health by keeping us out of the sunlight. The article also mentions several diseases that correlate to sunlight deficiency.  It is very-well-written and speaks the truth.

Read the article.

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Dancing in the Dark: Could Low Sunlight Exposure lead to Injuries in Professional Dancers?

By: Marc Sorenson, EdD. Sunlight Institute–


Research published in the journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, found that professional ballet dancers were much more likely to injure themselves during winter.[i] The objective of the study was to ascertain whether lack of sunlight exposure among the dancers during winter might correlate to lowered vitamin D levels and thereby increase injury.

Elite, classical ballet dancers, 19 in all, were chosen for the investigation and were monitored during a six-month period for vitamin D levels, serum markers for bone turnover, and frequency of injuries.

It was found that vitamin D levels averaged 14.9 ng/ml in winter and 23.9 ng/ml in summer. Soft tissue injuries were nearly twice as frequent in winter (24) as in summer (13).

It is significant that soft-tissue injuries correlated so closely to low vitamin D, since vitamin D is generally thought of as a bone-strengthening hormone. Also interesting is the fact that in both summer and winter, vitamin D levels were too low. In winter, the athletes were approaching critically low levels. Vitamin D, of course, is produced by the skin in response to sunlight exposure and would be expected to be higher in summer. Still, it was not nearly high enough, and though it is conjecture, I expect that levels around 60 ng/ml would have correlated to an even lower risk of athletic injuries among the dancers.

Perhaps it is time for dancers to leave the darkness and practice routines outdoors during summer. This would help optimize vitamin D and muscle strength. Then, in the winter, sunlamps could be used for vitamin D production, or at least regular vitamin D supplementation would provide some protection against winter injuries.



[i] Wolman R, Wyon MA, Koutedakis Y, Nevill AM, Eastell R, Allen N. Vitamin D status in professional ballet dancers: Winter vs. summer. J Sci Med Sport 2013;16(5):388-391.


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Another Dermatologist is recommending Sun Exposure? Yes, this time for Psoriasis

By: Marc Sorenson, EdD Sunlight Institute–


An American Dermatologist says that sunlight exposure can stop psoriasis, as reported in Science Daily.[1] Julie Moore, M.D. a dermatologist at Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, part of Loyola University Health System, makes the following statement: “30 minutes is adequate to improve the skin; you do not need to sit out for hours.”

It has been known for years that sunlight or UVB light from sunlamps has curative effects on psoriasis, and dermatologists have used sunlamps in their medical practices for years, while advocating nearly complete sun avoidance. The stunning part about the article is the fact that an American dermatologist is making the statement, because the American Academy of Dermatology (ADA) has vehemently opposed sunlight exposure for decades, and a past president has even suggested that we should all move underground to avoid the hazards of sunlight. British Dermatologists have been much more willing to suggest that a few minutes of sunlight around midday can improve health and optimize vitamin D levels, but too many American derms have continued to chant the mantra of the ADA.

This is an excellent article and it shows that times are changing.

Read the article

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Irish Beauty Expert now recommends daily Sun Exposure.

By: Marc Sorenson, EdD Sunlight Institute–


After so many years in which both dermatologists and beauty experts had recommended almost total sun abstinence, brave souls from each group are gingerly beginning to espouse the importance of a few minutes of regular, sun exposure, without sunscreen, to ensure good health.

The latest of these is Liz Earle, a beauty guru (and a beauty) who owns an extremely successful skin-care company, and who is concerned about bone health, suggests that women get some sun exposure between the hours of 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM. She chooses those times, because she understands that they are the times of greatest vitamin D production. She is now joining Gwyneth Paltrow and other luminaries in suggesting that some sun exposure is necessary for strong bones.

I congratulate MS Earle, and strongly suggest that you read the article in the Irish News.

Read the article.


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Being Smart in the Sunlight

By: Marc Sorenson, Sunlight Institute–

The website, mcall.com, has posted an excellent article called Smart Sun Exposure. It discusses sunlight as being the only natural way to obtain vitamin D and points out that pharmaceutical companies promote 24-hour sun protection products—advice that poses the problem of vitamin D deficiency—leading to breast cancers, gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, premature labor and other women’s health problems.

Perhaps the most interesting part to the article is the mention of high-antioxidant fruits and vegetables as the best SPFs available to replace the dangerous chemical sunscreens. This is something I have been saying for years: eat colorful fruits and vegetables to reduce skin damage.

Read the article at: http://www.mcall.com/health/inspirehealth/tips/inspire-health-mc-smart-sun-exposure-story,0,4170416.story. Also click on the tips below the article, especially the one entitled Protect Yourself from the Inside Out. In those tips, dark, organic dark chocolate is mentioned as a potent antioxidant containing 712 compounds, many of which are potently antioxidant and skin protective. But remember that typical milk chocolate is not worth anything in terms of enhancing health. I have been touting the benefits of dark, natural chocolate for some time, but did not know about its skin-protective effects.

Everyone who loves the sun should read this article.


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Can Sunlight Exposure Reduce the Risk of Prostate Cancer by 50%?

By: Marc Sorenson, Sunlight Institute–


I have previously written that sunlight exposure correlates to a profoundly reduced risk of prostate cancer (PC). I also and noted that that sunlight exposure per se appeared to be much more important in reducing that cancer than was vitamin D. In fact, some vitamin D studies showed only weak correlations between vitamin D and a reduction in cancer, and the highest levels of serum vitamin D showed a J-shaped curve, meaning that the highest D levels actually correlated to a slightly increased risk. No such increase has been shown with the highest levels of sunlight exposure–quite the opposite. The highest levels of sunlight correlated to the highest levels of protection against PC.

This would indicate that sunlight has protective effects beyond the production of vitamin D. Such effects may be due to the production of serotonin, endorphins and nitric oxide, substances other than vitamin D that are produced by the skin in response to sunlight.

It was with interest, therefore, that I read a recent article describing the effect of sunlight on PC, called “Sunlight could decrease prostate cancer risk.” After reading that sunlight exposure could reduce the risk of PC by 50%, the author unfortunately stated that “this does not mean that men should deliberately sunbathe to reduce their risk of prostate cancer. Outdoor exercise and an adequate amount of vitamin D from diet should be sufficient to afford protection from the disease.” This is not a statement based on science.

The author assumed, of course, that it was vitamin D that caused the correlation of sunlight exposure to reduced risk of PC—a conclusion that may be wholly in error. What we can glean from the research is only that Sunlight exposure correlates to reduced risk of PC. There is no proof whatsoever that the correlation was caused by vitamin D, which is only one of several metabolites produced in the body after stimulation by sunlight.

I have not as yet been able to find the original research on which the article was based and cannot provide a reference at this time. However, you can read the article by going to: http://www.newsfix.ca/2013/05/06/sunlight-could-decrease-prostate-cancer-risk/.


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Youngsters Should have at Least TEN HOURS of Sunlight Exposure per week to prevent myopia.

By: Marc Sorenson, Sunlight Institute–


Research from the University of Sidney in Australia suggests that children under the age of six should spend at least 10 hours per week in the sunlight. This is another in a series of research studies that show that sunlight exposure is vital to the visual health of children; it profoundly reduces the risk of myopia, or short-sightedness. Without sunlight, the eye develops an oval rather than a round shape.

One of the researchers also noted that “prevention of myopia is important for future eye health as even low levels of the condition place you at higher risk of cataracts and glaucoma in adulthood.” This is an important statement, since many physicians believe that sunlight exposure leads to cataracts and other eye disorders.

This is an excellent article and belies the idea that sunlight exposure is harmful to children.


Read more at:  http://medicalxpress.com/news/2013-05-eyes-sun-child-sunshine-exposure.html#jCp

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