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How to Enjoy the Outdoors while Minimizing the Risk of Skin Cancer

Posted on January 27 2017

More than 2 million Americans are diagnosed with skin cancer each year. And even though more and more people are using sunscreen, skin cancer diagnosis are on the climb.

Are we telling you not to have Fun in the Sun?

Truth is, the sun is essential for your health.

The Sun is your best source of Vitamin D3.

Vitamin D3 has been one of the most researched nutrients over the past 5 years and it has been shown to naturally help boost the immune system, help fight cancer and improve mood.

Is your sunscreen toxic?

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) just published their 2016 guide to safe sunscreens. They reviewed over 2000 sunscreens and over 257 brands. They found more than 75% of the sunscreens contained toxic chemicals that can increase your risk of cancer and other health issues.

The Dangers of Conventional Sunscreens

Research from the EWG states: “Our review…shows that some sunscreen ingredients absorb into the blood, and some have toxic effects. Some release skin-damaging free radicals in sunlight, some act like estrogen and disrupt hormones, and several can cause allergic reactions and skin irritation.”

You do not want your sunscreen to:

Absorb into the blood

Release free radicals in sunlight

Act like estrogen

Disrupt hormones

Cause allergic reactions

Cause skin irritation

A recent study published in Environmental Science Technology has also shown the common sunscreen ingredients oxybenzone, methoxycinnamate, and PABA are estrogenic chemicals linked to cancer. That’s right, I read the labels on not only my food products, but on anything I’m putting on or near my body, and you should too. If your sunscreen contains any of these chemicals I’d throw it away right now!

List of Unsafe, Toxic Chemicals in Sunscreen

  • Para amino benzoic acid
  • Octyl salicyclate
  • Oxybenzone
  • Cinoxate
  • Dioxybenzone
  • Phenylbenzimidazole
  • Homosalate
  • Menthyl anthranilate
  • Octocrylene
  • Methoxycinnamate
  • Parabens

There are two types of Suncreens: non-mineral and mineral.  And some that combine both.

  • Non-mineral sunscreens penetrate the skin, are potentially disruptive to hormones, are allergenic, and like I mentioned earlier, can release free radicals when they break down. Oxybenzone is the most common ingredient found in sunscreens. Scientists recommend not using sunscreens containing oxybenzone on children because of this hormone disruption.

bootle of unsafe sunscreen that uses chemicals instead of minerals

  • Mineral sunscreens are ones containing zinc, or titanium.  These do not breakdown in sunlight, are not usually absorbed ( so do not disrupt the body’s hormones), are not allergenic and are more effective at blocking UVA rays than non-minerals.  These sunscreens are a good choice for children and according to EWG have the best safety profiles of the choices in the United States.

 

Foods and Supplements that Protect Your Skin

According to the American Cancer Society, oxidative damage can increase your cancer risk, so I recommend eating a diet high in certain foods which can potentially decrease your risk.

List of the best foods and supplements to protect your skin

  • Resveratrol (red wine, blueberries and red grapes)
  • Omega-3 fatty acids (salmon and fish oil)
  • Astaxanthin (salmon and fish oil)
  • Catechins (green and white tea)
  • Vitamin E (pumpkin seeds, almonds, and asparagus)
  • Beta-carotene (carrots and red bell peppers)

Try Warrior Sunscreen from United Spirit of America:

As stated earlier, natural things or products made of natural ingredients provide most protection against the harmful UVA/UVB rays. Containing SPF50, this paraben free sunscreen has been designed with shield technology using mineral that protects the skin and lets sweat go through and disappear. Tested under extreme conditions, United Spirit of America Sunscreen is oil free and both sweat and water-resistant. 

Sources:  http://breakingnews.ewg.org/2012sunscreen/

Kunisue T, Chen Z, Buck Louis GM, Sundaram R, Hediger ML, Sun L, Kannan K. Urinary Concentrations of Benzophenone-type UV Filters in U.S. Women and Their Association with Endometriosis.  Environ Sci Tech 2012 Apr 17;46(8):4624-32. Epub 2012 Mar 29.

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