European Sunlight Association

voice of the european indoor tanning industry

August 17th, 2016

Especially during summer the question comes up if it is beneficial or dangerous to spend time in the sun or not. After having read this article you will have an overview of why moderate sun exposure is good for you. Generally speaking it does not matter if you use a sunbed or if you go out into the natural sun as the UV rays emitted from a sunbed correspond to the UV rays emitted by the sun around noon in the Mediterranean.

1. Vitamin D production

Over time, people moved from spending most of the day outside to working inside and therefore their bodies cannot produce the needed vitamin D. At least 15 minutes of sun exposure during midday is needed per day to produce the vitamin D that your body needs. Research showed that there is an epidemic of vitamin D deficiency in Europe and by spending more time in the sun you are able to increase your vitamin D levels.

2. Sun avoidance is dangerous

Usually, the general opinion is that sun is dangerous. A recent study carried out in Sweden found out that the contrary is actually true and that avoiding the sun is more dangerous than spending time in the sun.

3. Good sleep

The human body reacts to sunlight and when it is exposed to bright natural light, your body knows that it is daytime. If you expose your body to bright natural light in the morning it influences the whole internal clock. This internal clock will “program” your body accordingly and once it is night it will start producing melatonin again.

4. It makes you feel good

Light therapy has been used to treat many diseases and often people experience tiredness in winter when days are shorter. Sunlight, both natural and artificial, makes you feel better and your happiness level gets up.

To put in a nutshell, spending time in the sun is very beneficial for your body and health. It is important to expose yourself in a moderate way and then your body will thank you for it with a stable immune system and a happy mind, so enjoy the sun!

– Cashman, K. et al. (2016). Vitamin D deficiency in Europe: pandemic?, The Americal Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2016 103: 1033-1044.
– Lindqvist PG, Epstein E, Nielsen K, Landin-Olsson M, Ingvar C, Olsson H (Karolinska University Hospital, Lund University, Lund, Sweden). Avoidance of sun exposure as a risk factor for major causes of death: a competing risk analysis of the Melanoma in Southern Sweden cohort. J Intern Med 2016; doi: 10.1111/joim.12496.
– Matthias Wacker and Michael F. Holick, „Sunlight and Vitamin D“, Dermatoendocrinol, 2013 Jan 1; 51–108, Published online 2013 Jan 1. doi: 10.4161/derm.24494
– NIH Institute Medline Plus, Summer 2012, Issue: Volume 7 Number 2 Page 20