Spring is suddenly in the air and summer is just around the corner. Doesn’t it make you want to get outdoors and feel the sun against your skin! The good news is that some scientific studies are suggesting that moderate exposure to natural sunlight can provide all sorts of health benefits. Let’s take a look at 5 reasons why a bit of sunshine in your life is actually going to do you some good.
Sunshine can help you to get a good night’s sleep
Sunshine between the hours of 8am and noon may help you combat insomnia and jet-lag. This is because sunlight sends a message to the part of your brain to stop producing melatonin. Melatonin makes you sleepy, so the brain reduces levels of this chemical until it starts to go darker in the evening.
Sunlight can help keep your bones healthy
Natural sunshine against your skin is the best natural source of vitamin D, which is needed to help your body absorb calcium. Calcium helps to keep your bones strong. Elderly persons who have not absorbed enough calcium during their lifetimes are at increased risk of developing life-threatening osteoporosis. This condition can cause fractures and breaks of bones, including hip-fractures.
It might boost your fertility
Sunshine can increase production of testosterone in men and therefore increase their libido. In women it can have the effect of boosting levels of the sex hormones progesterone and oestrogen.
Sunlight might help prevent you putting on weight
Several scientific studies have shown that exposure to sunlight during the morning hours can help to regulate your appetite, and prevent you from putting on weight. What better reason do you need for getting out of bed that little bit earlier and walking to the shops with your
Going outside into the sun may help fight depression
Do you feel gloomy during the last few months of winter? This could be because you are one of the many people who suffer from a mild type of depression known as Seasonally Affected Disorder (SAD). Reduced sunlight during the winter months reduces levels of serotonin, a chemical which helps you to keep positive and happy. Studies have shown that even as little as 5 to 30 minutes of walking outside, with your arms, legs or face exposed, uncovered by sunblock, can help your mood to improve.
Use your common sense
How much exposure to sunlight you need to benefit from these amazing health boosts will vary, depending on your skin type and the brightness of the sunshine. Doctors have been warning us for years that increased exposure to direct sunlight can cause skin cancer and eyesight problems. Use your common sense to get the balance right. Never allow your skin to burn and never look directly at the sun. For most of us, 20 to 30 minutes exposure to the sunshine 3 or 4 times a week is all you need.