Why Vitamin D is called the sunshine vitamin
Vitamin D, which helps calcium absorption and strengthens bones, is synthesized in the body by receiving ultraviolet rays from the sun. For this reason, vitamin D is nicknamed the ‘sunshine vitamin’.
However, the problem is that ultraviolet rays contained in sunlight are the cause of skin cancer. Then, the question arises, ‘Isn’t it good for bone health if I block my skin from being exposed to the sun to prevent skin cancer?’
Sun protection may not have a negative effect on vitamin D
However, a recent study found that shading hats, long sleeves, and sunscreen used to avoid sunlight do not affect bone density. On October 27, Mayo Clinic dermatologist Megha Tollefson’s team in the US discovered this through a study.1
The research team analyzed data from a government survey conducted on 3,400 adults with an average age of 40. According to the survey, about 32% of them wear a sun hat or frequent shade to avoid the sun, 12% wear long sleeves, and 26% apply sunscreen when going out.
Correcting rumors about sunscreen
The research team looked at their bone density test data and examined whether they had a history of fractures related to osteoporosis. The results showed that there was no association between sun-blocking behavior and bone density, and that sun-blocking did not increase the risk of fractures from osteoporosis.
The research team emphasized that the results of this study could have important implications as there are widespread rumors that sunscreen will deplete vitamin D, which helps in bone formation. The research team noted that there are still many people who are reluctant to use sunscreen because of concerns that they will be deficient in vitamin D.
The results of this study were published in the latest issue of Dermatology in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
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