I have been loving these sunny days. Even though I spend most of the sunniest part of the day inside during the week, when Saturday hits I can’t wait to just sit in the sunshine for about 20 mins to absorb some rays. Yes there can be too much of a good thing, we are all well versed in the dangers of skin cancer. But a little bit of sunshine is also very valuable for your health. Here is why you should be trying to expose yourself a little bit each day. I still wear a hat whenever I sit on the balcony, but try to expose at least my arms and legs to get maximum absorption.
- Vitamin D production – our bodies naturally produce this vitamin when our skin is exposed to direct sunlight (not sunscreen). Viatmin D is critical for bone health as it boosts calcium absorption, this reduces the risk of osteoporosis and bone diseases
- Sunshine boosts your serotonin, this is your happy hormone! Regular exposure to sunshine can boost your mood, stave off depression. Exercising outside can possibly produce more endorphins that exercising inside too.
- May help to prevent diabetes – vitamin D deficiency is though to contribute to an onset of Type 2 diabetes
- Relieves aches and pains – warming the muscles and reducing stiffness which means reducing inflammation
- Helps to kill colds – maybe this is psychosomatic for me, but if I have a cold or flu, I always feel better after sitting in the sun for a little while. Maybe it is because the sun just raises the body temperature to help fight infection or maybe it is the actual sunlight helping to kill the bacteria. Either way, I swear by it!
- It may even boost your metabolism – although I can’t find a good explanation for this, there seem to be a few studies that correlate increase in metabolism with sun exposure. It could be as simple as the more sunlight, the more likely your body is to think it is summer time and no need to put excess calories into fat storage for the winter.