We’ve been hearing this advice for years. But is it really beneficial? Are we (runners) hurting ourselves by avoiding sunlight? Is our sun phobia causing more problems that it solves?
According to this US News story, we may be. This published article by Dr. Gordy Ainsleigh is even more damning. We’re even seeing an explosion of rickets among children from our panicked reaction to the sun.
The idea is simple- sun exposure is our best source of vitamin D. The potential negatives of sun exposure (increased incidence of skin cancer, premature aging) are far outweighed by regular, moderate, non-burning sun exposure due to a decrease in often-fatal internal cancers.
Me? I stopped using sun screen awhile ago, and only bust it out if I am going to be exposed long enough to burn and it’s too hot from protective clothing (like my experimental hat). I do the same with my kids.
What do you think? Should we continue pretending we’re extras in the latest Twilight flick, or should we follow this advice and get moderate weekly exposure to sunlight?