Gentle Recovery

Be like a Sunflower

Be like a Sunflower

Here comes summer, let’s be like the sunflower and enjoy the health-benefitting rays

Vitamin D is the sunshine vitamin.

50% of the population are said to be deficient in this key vitamin. There are very few foods that contain enough Vitamin D that’s why it’s best to get our daily dose from the sunshine.

Why is Vit D so important?

  • It increases bone health along with calcium
  • It increases muscle mass and muscle strength
  • It regulates the immune system and helps protect against certain diseases including cancer, heart disease, autoimmune diseases, type2 diabetes and depression.
  • It helps in development of the nervous system.

When your skin is exposed to sunlight, it makes Vitamin D for cholesterol. The ultraviolet B rays hit the cholesterol in the skin cells, providing the energy for Vitamin D synthesis to occur.

What’s the RDA for Vitamin D?

The recommended daily dose is 600 IU’s. A study in Oslo found that 30 mins of midday sun was equivalent to consuming 10,000-20,000 IU’s of Vitamin D.

In the UK for example, it’s recommended to take 13 minutes of midday sun during the summer, 3 days per week for Caucasian adults. People with darker skin will need to spend longer, more like 30 minutes to get what they need. People who live farther form the equator need more time in the sun, as more UVB rays are absorbed by the ozone layer. During winter months people further north cannot make enough Vit D, so they need to add in with Vit D rich foods and supplements.

Be careful not to burn. Short periods of sun exposure without sunscreen is great for Vitamin D production but for any longer do cover up with clothes and/or sunscreen.

Here comes summer, let’s be like the sunflower and enjoy the health-benefitting rays 🦋🌞

P.S if you have Lymphoedema be sure to protect your skin in the affected area as getting a sunburn can lead to infection.

India Gooderham

India Gooderham’s background is as a Specialist Physiotherapist working in oncology and palliative care in the UK. She is now working as a Cancer Exercise Specialist and Cancer Yoga teacher and is founder of ‘Gentle Recovery’, an online rehabilitation and wellness platform for people affected by cancer. Her mission is to serve, educate and empower people at any stage of their cancer journey through exercise, yoga and wellness online programmes and 1-2-1 online coaching.

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