Breast Cancer’s Link to Vitamin D Is a Good Excuse to Go Out in the Sun

Sun exposure levels can cause breast cancerWhat if I were to tell you that going out in the sun without sunscreen could be a good thing? Get this: there's new research out of Australia that says women who live in the south and are exposed to less sunlight are at a higher risk for breast cancer diagnosis. Translation: More sun exposure = lower risk for breast cancer.

Here I was, trying to stay out of the sun and put on gobs and gobs sunscreen to prevent me from getting skin cancer, only to find out that I SHOULD go out in the sun to stave off breast cancer? I'm getting exhausted. I mean -- is it just me, or is there nothing that we can do right to protect our health anymore?

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It's like I feel like I can't win. If I do one thing to protect myself from one disease or ailment, then I'm putting myself at risk for another. I'm not much of a hypochondriac, but every day I'm finding more and more reasons to just lock myself up in my room with enough food for a year and my Netflix subscription. Oh wait, but then I may get breast cancer.

OK, that's a bit extreme. Like every woman, I do the best I can to lead a standard healthy life. Eating right, getting exercise, and taking care of yourself -- that's the best we can do.

So what do the experts suggest for sun exposure? Short periods of direct peak sun exposure, meaning 15 minutes 3 times a week without sunscreen, will provide you with the recommended daily amount of vitamin D. Sounds manageable, right? Just remember, the farther you live from the equator (I'm look at the rest of ya, New Englanders) -- the less vitamin D you produce.

To learn more about the role that vitamin D exposure plays in breast cancer, check out more information from the Vitamin D Council.

What do you do to stay healthy? Do you get enough vitamin D?

 

Image via midiman/Flickr

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