Just for a moment, forget what you have heard about sunshine, skin cancer and harmful ultra-violet radiation. Spring has arrived and before we know it summer will be here. That means hotter and sunnier days are on their way.
When natural sunlight hits the skin it triggers the body’s production of vitamin D. Vitamin D is also known as “the sunshine vitamin.” It is a crucial ingredient for overall health; protects against inflammation, lowers high blood pressure, helps muscles, improves brain function and may even protect against cancer.
Low levels of vitamin D can cause heart disease, prostate cancer and dementia.[slideshow:83851]
Your body is meant to be in the sun, and exposure to sunlight during the day is crucial to your wellbeing (Sunlight May Improve Heart Health). It is advised to get at least 10-15 minutes of sunlight daily.
Exposure to sunlight has a huge impact on depression, seasonal affective disorder and sleep quality. According to Forbes, “in 2012, 60 million Americans filled prescriptions for sleeping pills, up from 46 million in 2006 (as reported in The New York Times).”
Adding a little sunshine to your life can even promote weight loss (The Health Benefits of Weight Loss)! The warmer months allows for fun outdoor activities. Go on a hike (The 10 Best Spring Hikes in the U.S.), take up a new sport, go for a run, bike around your neighborhood or even plan a camping trip. You will be surprised to see what spending a little time outdoors can do for your health.