Sunscreen Extreme: Are We Filtering Too Much?


If you ask a member of the public about the effects of sunlight, I suspect nine times out of ten they would be able to identify the risks of skin cancer and skin aging. This is a testament to the highly effective and evidence-based information campaigns run by the medical profession and taken up by the cosmetic industry.

The extensive and robust research confirming sunlight is a skin carcinogen been well-translated into a publichealth message that few have missed hearing. But is sunlight all bad? And does complete protection against sun exposure offer benefits only in the way that avoiding smoking does?

A growing body of evidence— much counter-intuitively obtained by researchers attempting to Richard Weller, M.D. Relaxsol, Edinburgh, UK define the extent to which UV produces harm—now shows that sunlight almost certainly has significant health benefits, and that these cannot be reproduced by vitamin D supplementation. The latest advice from the National Academy of Sciences in United States acknowledges sunshine has health benefits.

So in this changing environment, how should experts now be advising the public? And perhaps more interestingly, how can we optimize the benefits of sunshine while at the same time preventing its harm?

Continue reading in the April 2019 Digital Edition...

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