We always believed that a good quality of sun exposure begins in the early morning. We are taught that few minutes of exposure under the sun helps our skin rejuvenate and when it comes to vitamin D, sun exposure has a wide range of positive health effects, including possibly inhibiting the growth of some cancers.
Vitamin D is produced naturally through adequate sun. Vitamin D has benefits beyond bone health and helps our body fight off diabetes, kidney problems and other illnesses.
But the best time for sun exposure is not during early mornings.
Medically speaking it’s not. According to Dr. Marilou Renales, Board Member, Philippine College of Occupational Medicine and Dr. Alejandro Diaz of the Philippine Neurological Association, the best time for sun exposure is when it is at its highest peak or from 12 noon to 1-2 in the afternoon.
Sounds crazy right?
In the Philippines, because of our tropical climate, especially during the summer season, Filipinos were made to believe that sun exposure during the mid day makes our skin darker and bring illnesses. We feel uncomfortable during those hours so we put on hats, caps, sun block, or use umbrellas to ‘protect’ us from the heat of the sun. Have you heard of dehydration and heat strokes?
The fact is, a typical Filipino‘s’ naturally tan complexion, given the moderate to high levels of melanin in their skin, is one factor of vitamin D deficiency. And people who have fair and lighter skin are more prone to absorb all the beneficial factor from sun exposure.
Why is it that people who are fair and white living in cold countries tend to be more prone to cancer and depression?
Cancer and depression results from inadequate amount of vitamins like vitamin D. In countries where they have winter season, people fail to get a good amount of sun exposure even at noon time. And because it is cold outside, some of them just stay indoors.
This is why in Africa, there are many cases where people suffer from cancer. While they have bright and sunny days, too much or lack of it leads to the inadequate or unbalanced source of vitamin D.
Dr. Diaz suggested a 10-15 minute of moderate and unprotected sun exposure during the mid day on daily basis is good enough. “You really need to go out there and expose yourself just for minimal period. What we are just saying we need probably a small amount of sun exposure if you can do it daily but if you cannot then get it from other sources, like supplementation,” said Dr. Diaz to get the necessary 800 IU of vitamin D.
But are you willing to be served of two cans of tuna flakes, two cans of sardines or mackerel, 40 eggs, or 200-800 grams of salmon daily?
As a preventive measure against vitamin D deficiency, doctors have endorsed the daily intake of vitamin D supplements.
Forti-D, the latest vitamin D supplement in the market, is a single-dose supplement that contains 800 IU of vitamin D3. Also known as colecalciferol, vitamin D3 impacts one’s bone structure, blood pressure, hormone production and potential for diseases and cancers.
“Taking one capsule of Forti-D every day helps reduce the risk of getting chronic diseases by unlocking the proper function of organs typically affected by such illnesses,” said Alex Panlilio, Unilab VP for Consumer Health.
The first of its kind vitamin supplement available for purchase per piece, Forti-D is sold at Php 6.50 (SRP) in leading drugstores nationwide.
Lastly, many Filipinos do not have sufficient level of vitamin D primarily because of lifestyle.
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