Vitamin D and Health
New research indicates that vitamin D—whether produced in the skin as a result of exposure to ultraviolet radiation (from sunlight or from tanning beds) or obtained from supplementation with cholecalciferol (vitamin D3)—may help prevent cancer. News headlines regarding the many health benefits of vitamin D are appearing everywhere. For decades, people wrongly assumed that we get enough vitamin D from our diet and by taking a daily multivitamin pill. Today, studies are reporting most of us are vitamin D deficient and vitamin D deficiencies may well be causing numerous illnesses.
Depleted of vitamin D, your immune system may not be up to its full potential leaving you more susceptible to additional health concerns. It’s strongly believed that vitamin D deficiency is a growing epidemic! Vitamin D has demonstrated support for:
Vitamin D has demonstrated support for:
- Your healthy immune system
- Your cardiovascular system
- Your prostate
- Helping increase your level of white blood cells
- Your healthy skin
Vitamin D and the Body
Vitamin D is naturally produced by the human body when exposed to direct sunlight. Synthesis in the skin involves UVB radiation. Geographic latitude, time of day, cloud cover, smog, sunscreen and season all affect UV ray exposure and vitamin D synthesis in the skin.
Vitamin D and Diet
We get a little vitamin D in our diet, but not enough. We also get some in multivitamins, but multivitamins only contain 400 units, which is about 10% of the body's daily need. Because most of us do NOT get enough vitamin D from our diet and from vitamins, producing vitamin D naturally with help from the sun or tanning bed’s UVB rays is essential.
The Importance of UVB Rays for your Health
In moderation, ultraviolet rays from the sun or a tanning system can have many health benefits from producing vitamin D as discussed above. Unfortunately, up to half of the population is not getting enough vitamin D from ultraviolet rays. UVB rays actually help your skin to produce up to 80% of the vitamin D in your body. Your body simply can't make vitamin D without exposure to UVB energy.
UVB Rays are the Best Natural Source of Vitamin D
To produce vitamin D naturally you need to get some exposure to ultraviolet rays. You can take vitamin D supplements if you believe you are not getting enough sun rays, but a better way is to get vitamin D naturally by allowing your body to make it naturally. In order for your body to produce vitamin D naturally you need to get some exposure to ultraviolet A (UVA) and B (UVB) rays, like those produced by the sun and tanning systems.
Regulate your body's vitamin D levels with the sun’s UVB rays not supplements. The best way to regulate your body's vitamin D levels is with the sun’s UVB rays not with supplements. Many supplements are synthetic, which you should avoid. Also, taking vitamin D supplements in excessive doses can lead to additional health concerns. The best place to get your vitamin D is from ultraviolet B rays. The amount of time an individual requires to produce a given amount of vitamin D may also depend upon the person's distance from the equator and on the season of the year.
Tanning bed’s UVB rays is a good option for regulating your vitamin D levels. For many, getting ample sunlight just isn't an option. You may have busy lives or it could be the weather that does not allow you to get outdoors a lot. In these cases tanning beds are your next best option in regulating your vitamin D levels.
Exposure to the sun’s or artificial UVB rays is necessary. For years we’ve been warned that tanning systems artificial UVA and UVB rays were dangerous. But now some health professionals are saying some exposure to the sun’s or artificial UVB rays is necessary.
The use of tanning systems is important during the winter months. More people are "under the weather" or feel fatigued and run-down during the months November through March. During that period, in most of the United States the sun won't stimulate vitamin D in your body, due to its increased distance. Your vitamin D levels can drop as much as 50% during the winter.
Not all Tanning Beds are Created Equal.
It is also important to note that not all tanning beds are safe and many can produce burning rays. Also many people ABUSE tanning beds and spend too much time in them, INCREASING their risk of cancer. Most tanning beds on the market do not use the proper light rays and the conventional fluorescent bulbs they use emit harmful rays out the ends of the bulb. Many tanning beds also use magnetic ballasts that emit EMF's (electromagnetic frequency waves) that can be very harmful to the body as well. There are studies that associate EMF with cancer. Use tanning beds that use electronic ballasts, eliminating that concern over electromagnetic radiation.
Bottom Line on Vitamin D
Scientists at the Vitamin D Council agree that both children and adults should have a Vitamin D level of 50 ng/ml all year-round. They recommend the use of most tanning systems as a safe and effective way to help you achieve natural levels of vitamin D.