The sun fuels all forms of life and is a critical part of our mantra for living well. The sun is responsible for pretty much everything, from making plants green to bringing all the bright colors to every petal of every flower, to nourishing the bee population so that they can pollinate. It has analgesic effects on the body, boosts the mood, and helps synthesize Vitamin D production. Why on earth would the Sun be killing us and making everything else come alive at the same time?
“Getting sunburned is actually easier on our DNA than processing the cell damage from being in the sun with sunscreen”
— Nadine Artemis
THE DESIGN OF THE SUN
VITAMIN D// When our skin is exposed to sunlight, the UVB rays interact with a protein in our skin called 7-DHC that helps manufacture the usable form of Vitamin D - Vitamin D3 - that is responsible in fighting cancer in the body.
MUSCLE + NERVE STRENGTH// Early olympians were required to train outside in the sun, so that their muscles, tendons, and nerve endings stayed healthy and buoyant. Vitamin D regulates neuromuscular functioning and enhances protein synthesis.
BONE STRENGTH// Vitamin D from the sun helps to mineralize the bones by retaining calcium concentration in the blood. When the bones are mineralized, the bones are able to become strong given the muscles are strong. The muscles pull on the bones, making them stronger - and vice versa.
EYE HEALTH// Unprotected eye exposure to the sun allows the eye to absorb all of the spectrums of the sun. This stimulates the pineal gland as well as our superchiosmatic nucleus inside the hypothalamus - synergizing hormonal bodily rhythms. When we wear sunglasses, we are only allowed to absorb UVA rays. We need both UVB + UVA rays to avoid 'sun damage'.
THE SUN IS ON YOUR SIDE: 6 WAYS
1. Ditch the Sunglasses: When we are only getting UVA rays, this is when we get the most sun damage. Just as eating whole foods, the whole spectrum, UVB + UVA, rays is essential for getting the eye used to the light of the sun and getting the whole form of 'sun food.'
2. Sun gaze! The more you fill your eye up with light, the more tolerant you become to the sunshine. Start with sun gazing in the early morning or night, as the sun is rising or setting, to start filtering amounts of light into the eye.
3. Drop the Sunscreen: What sunscreen does, aside from toxify you with parabens + chemicals + fragrances + carcinogens, is it blocks UVB rays from entering and only allows UVA rays to enter. When the pair is split up, and we only get the UVA rays, this is when 'sun damage' starts to happen. Again, UVA rays are damaging while UVB rays are where allllll the Vitamin D comes from to (as mentioned above) protect our cells from cancer, bone softness, and muscle degradation to name a few.
Wearing sunscreen also turns off our inner alarm system that tells us when we have had enough sun, and we are starting to burn. (Hence why long, sunscreened days on the boat, give you the biggest burn!) So, by trying to reduce our risk of melanoma and dousing! reapplying! ourselves in sunscreen, we actually increase our risk of melanoma by shutting off our hormonal alarm systems and blocking the protective UVB rays from entering our body....aka our cells. Oxybenzone, the active ingredient in sunscreen, is classified as non-carcinogenic until* it is exposed to sunlight! It then becomes highly reactive and carcinogenic.
4. If you have to pick one....Get sunburnt, over sunscreened: When we start to get sunburned, the melanin in our skin is able to convert 99.9% of the photons into harmless heat - thus diluting intense damage to the DNA. When we wear suncreen, the DNA is basically shocked and without warning (right? The burn warnings aren't there! Theres no UVB rays) and causes genetic mutations in the DNA that lead to cancerous conditions within the DNA or indirect DNA damage.
5. Free Nutrients: We are big believers in Free Wellness at Laka. When your skin is exposed to the sun, your body (cells, pores, etc) literally dilates to absorb nutrients from the sun needed for normal bodily processes. The skin converts sunbeams into regenerative substances - Sulphur, Melanin, Vitamin D (a precursor hormone). Rest asssured, we need this lube! For immunity, energy, and metabolism.
6. Free Purification: When we supplement with VItamin D, this is fat-soluble, and can be used to fortify our bones, teeth, etc. But when we get the sun-form of Vitamin D, this is water-soluble, and actually serves as a blood purifier on top of being a bone, teeth, and muscles strengthener!
We have Vitamin D receptors on our breasts, colon, heart, prostate, everywhere! When these receptors get their water soluble form of Vitamin D, they actually begin to protect us and defend against free radicals and DNA damage that can lead to cancer.
Don't give up on the sun altogether. If you want to start using the healing powers of the sun, start slow and in small amounts with unprotection. Choose early morning or late afternoon to get your dose and make sure to feel the warmth and glow Mama Sun gives to you. Eventually, working up to getting your exposure at solar noon! Yes, the middle of the day! Just like the plants, animals, and waters, you will be glowing in no time.
This post was inspired by our love for the sweet Hawaiian Sunshine and this podcast.