As Summer approaches in the Northern hemisphere and temperatures rise, it can be easy to get excited to be in the sun and end up coming home an unflattering shade of red. Aesthetics aside, sun burn is highly damaging to the skin, prematurely aging it and affecting your health and increasing the risk of skin cancer.
Fortunately, there are some easy ways to minimize damage to your skin from the sun, while still getting exposure to the healing benefits of the sun and getting enough Vitamin D.
1. Start with just a little time in the sun.
When the sun starts peeking out, you can start to expose your skin to it for short time frames of just a few minutes. If you are dark skinned, you could start with 15-30 minutes. Then build up the amount of time you expose your skin to the sun over a period of a few weeks, increasing the time just a little at a time. This will allow your skin to gradually adjust rather than going from A to Z and shocking it and increasing the likelihood of burning. Once you have built up your sun exposure, aim to only directly expose your skin to the sun for 20 minutes a day for very fair skin away from the hottest part of the day, then use clothing and natural sun cream to protect your skin for any further time in the sun. The darker your skin, the more time you can spend in the sun without covering up or using sun cream. If you have very dark skin, you may not need to do anything at all but it’s best to err on the side of caution.
2. Use a natural sun cream.
Toxic, chemical-laden sun creams that you find in any pharmacy or grocery store are also toxic to your body. Instead choose pure, natural sun cream products, usually only containing zinc oxide.
3. Eat an antioxidant rich whole food diet.
Focus on as much of your diet as possible being fresh, colorful fruits and vegetables. They are rich in antioxidants and nutrients and each color provides a different profile of these health-protectors. The more antioxidants and nutrition your body absorbs, the more effective your body will be at combating any negative effects of too much sun exposure and sun burn. It will also help you to feel and look as amazing as possible!
4. Supplement with powerful antioxidants like Astaxanthin and herbs like Chaga.
Astaxanthin is celebrated for boosting the skin’s natural resistance to sunburn by transporting carotenoids to your skin cells where they can protect them from UV exposure. Herbs are also extremely helpful at protecting your skin and boosting your health so you can handle more sun exposure. Our favorite for this is Chaga, which not only protects the skin, but also helps to detoxify environmental toxins and slow down aging.
5. Detoxify your body.
It might seem like a strange suggestion but if your body is holding a lot of toxicity and waste, you are far more likely to experience damage from the sun. The sun is highly alkaline and toxic waste matter in the body is acidic. Alkaline and acidic substances attract to each other like magnets, so if you are very acidic the alkaline sun will likely do more damage to your skin and health than if you live a clean, healthy lifestyle that allows for effective functioning of your detoxification organs. Eat a fruit and vegetable based diet and ensure your bowel is working very well. Use enemas and colonics if you are not eliminating at least 1-2 times per day with an easy and full bowel movement.
Apply these steps immediately and you will see a noticeable improvement in your skin quality, how easily you burn and your overall health and energy so you are ready for Summer