Los Angeles gives us summer-like weather almost all year round. But even here in California, the rays of the sun become more intense during the summer months, so regardless of where we live, we must all be extra mindful about our sun exposure during this time of the year.
The American Cancer Society states that there are over five million new skin cancer cases each year and that melanoma outweighs all other cancers combined! These are staggering statistics especially for those of us who live in a sunny climate and may be at increased risk.
There seems to be a lot of confusion about healthy sun exposure and whether or not a tan equals potential long-term damage to our skin. While there are many opinions on this topic, some things remain clear.
The basic guidelines to follow in order to reduce your overall risks of cancer and aging of the skin are:
- Avoid lengthy sun exposure at peak times between 10am-4pm
- Cover up with clothing, a brimmed hat, and sunglasses
- Remain in shady areas between 10am-4pm
- Apply quality sunscreen liberally to exposed areas
With new studies coming out about potential dangers of certain chemicals in sunscreen, it can be overwhelming trying to decide which ones to purchase to protect you and your family. As a general guide, stick to natural sunblock whenever possible. Look for creams and lotions that contain titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide as their main sun protection ingredients.
While the verdict is still out, certain ingredients may act as endocrine disruptors which can mimic the hormone estrogen. When made by the body or given as a drug, increased estrogen may affect reproductive organs and may also raise the risk of certain cancers. For more information, visit the Environmental Working Group EWG for a list of sunscreen products which can be harmful.
Along with being smart about your sun exposure, you may want to take some natural approaches too, in order to boost your body’s ability to block harmful UVA and UVB rays.
Astaxanthin– this potent antioxidant found most often in shrimp, salmon, lobster, and krill has been shown to increase the body’s natural ability to absorb UVA and UVB. Supplementing a minimum of 2mg of Astaxanthin per day, may help to lower your risk of cancer and reduce overall inflammation.
Topical Vitamin C– Applying a Vitamin C serum or cream with your sunscreen may act as extra defense from the damage that the sun causes to your skin. A serum is best, one that contains at least 15% pure Vitamin C.
CoQ10– Supplementing with Coenzyme Q10 and using it topically in creams or lotions may help to fight the free radicals that come from the sun’s rays. Italian researchers found that melanoma patients had very low levels of CoQ10 compared to those who were free of cancer. Another study in 2006 showed that topical CoQ10 suppressed the inflammation caused by UV radiation.
Healthy Exposure– More and more doctors and health practitioners are suggesting that 10-20 minutes of sun exposure to a large percentage of your skin without sunscreen, may actually be a healthy and good way to produce natural Vitamin D3. Some experts suggest doing this before 10am or after 4pm while others say that peak times are okay.
Vitamin D– Supplementing Vitamin D3 may help to boost immunity and reduce the risk of certain cancers. It is thought that taking Vitamin K along with D3 may increase the positive effects of a Vitamin D3 supplement.
Apart from avoiding skin cancer, many of us want to keep our largest organ looking young and supple. It really is a balancing act of getting enough rays to boost our health and immunity without overdoing it and causing sun-related aging of our skin.
Like all things in life, balance is key. It is vital that we don’t live in fear or angst about enjoying healthy sun time with friends and family, but also, ensuring that we are taking precautions and being smart.
Let this summer be one that you remember. Take the steps to protect yourself and then go out and celebrate this wonderful time of the year. Be healthy, be safe, and enjoy!
*Always consult with your doctor about healthy sun practices, especially if you have a history of melanoma or are at increased risk of cancer.
Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com
He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!
I can’t say for sure if the Law of Attraction works 100% of the time. I have certainly read a lot about Quantum Physics along with numerous books outlining the powerful art of allowing things into our life. Sometimes I believe in it more than others.
One thing I know for sure, is that when I feel good, all things in my life seem to improve. When I feel optimistic, positive, and awake, my business picks up almost immediately, I feel more joy, and I seem to attract more wonderful people into my daily experience.
On the other hand, when I am tired, in a negative state, or just bored, clients drop off the face of the earth, my passion dissipates, and I become complacent.
Is this the Law of Attraction at play? Maybe. Whatever we want to call it, if we pay close attention, our emotions seem to navigate us into either a better or worse feeling experience.
That being said, does bad stuff happen to positive and happy people? Of course it does but it is my belief that we may be able to reduce much of this so-called negativity by first, changing our state of mind.
Have you ever noticed that those who complain the most seem to have more challenges? It’s as if life shows them more reasons to back their deep belief that things are hard or that they somehow have bad luck. The same seems true for those with a positive attitude. Life often gives them joyful experiences and when bad things do happen, they seem to find a deeper meaning in it and they gently flow through it without feeling victimized.
Life can be challenging that is certain. And sometimes we get what we don’t want. So isn’t it time that we learn to find true and lasting joy in ALL the moments of our journey and not just the good stuff? What if we could make a decision right now that we will begin seeing life as fair, loving, and protective and that when life gives us lemons, we WILL make lemonade.
Our mindset is directly connected to our emotions and vice versa. Therefore having a fearful thought makes us feel bad. We certainly can’t feel on top of the world every moment of every day but we CAN make a conscious effort to choose our thoughts more carefully, believe that the Universe is a friendly place, and trust that our future will in fact, be bright.
At the end of the day, we really only have two choices. We can choose lemons or we can choose lemonade. We can choose love or we can choose fear. Why not choose love more often? Love for our self, for others, for life, and for the world around us. Use today as an experiment to shift your mindset and watch how quickly your days begin to improve. Summer is here so you may as well enjoy that lemonade.
Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com
He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!
It’s that time of year again. Summer is approaching and magazines are featuring the latest articles on “bikini fat-blasting tips” and “how to get fit for summer.” While I am the first to admit that I have written many such articles for various publications, I thought it was time to embrace another even more important truth; that we should LIVE LIKE IT’S SUMMER ALL YEAR LONG!
What does that mean exactly? For one, why not start celebrating your body today as you are even if you haven’t blasted all the fat. It’s sort of like using your fine china every day instead of just when company comes over. It’s time to stop postponing our happiness for some far off goal that may or may not be reached.
We have all done this in some form or another. I know I have certainly postponed plans for when I have more money or when I meet that dream mate. Well, perhaps we all need to work on loving ourselves from the inside out and then the outside in regardless of whether or not we’re beach ready.
As a wellness coach, I am the first to speak about getting fit, eating right, and becoming the best version of you that you can be. Along with that however, comes a lot of pressure. Sometimes, the very act of transforming our life while liberating on one hand can also be very daunting. Transforming means that we need to become something other than who we are right now. That takes us away from the present moment and often causes us to miss out.
What if we all surrender just a little? What if we let ourselves off the hook? What about hitting the beach un-waxed, unfit, and unassuming? Maybe, just maybe, it’s time to live fully and completely regardless of where we are at in our fitness or body goals.
Being body conscious can be two-fold. It can mean that we are conscious of putting our best selves out into the world and we become keenly aware of what we are putting into our body…that’s a good thing. But it can also have another meaning; that we are self-conscious of our bodies and feeling less than those who look better than we do.
With summer approaching I suggest that yes, you up your fitness routine, yes focus on eating a healthier diet, yes moisturize, wax, and do whatever it is that you need to do to feel good. But once you have that underway, relax. Breathe. Meditate. Love yourself. Forgive yourself for not being perfect. Embrace your insecurities and those things you feel may be flaws while learning to stand in that quiet confidence knowing that you are always a work in progress. But for today, you will simply “be.”
Now go put on that skimpy bikini, head to the closest pool or beach, and OWN it!
Jay Bradley is an anti-aging & wellness coach living in Los Angeles
He is the author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!