Friday, May 28, 2010

Do You Have The Real Facts Behind Chemical Sunscreens?

Sunscreens - What are they doing to you and your body?

For many years, long before we opened megaSun Tanning Studios, I had a fascination with ingredients. In fact, I can quite clearly state, I was mesmerised by them from childhood; be it ingredients for cooking or food related or, when I was older, those contained in medicines and cosmetics. This possibly influenced my life choices of what I wanted to and where I wanted to work – but that as they say is another story. I have had an interest in sunscreen for many years, wondering what it does when the liver tries to metabolise it, what are the pharmacokinetics of them (key factors affecting their absorption and distribution in the body).

Those of you who know me well, know that once I get my teeth into something I just have to keep researching and reading until I find answers – answers that are plausible and from studies that are done with integrity and honesty. For some time now, it has been a concern as to what sunscreens really do – or don’t do. I have always had my own thoughts and feelings from what I have read over the years – and looking at the facts presented by clever scientists who understand the whole concept of neutral studies (i.e. without lies, pretention or hiding an ulterior motive). This article tells how it is - what has been known for a long long time. Read the full article here and be prepared to have a new perspective on sunscreens!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Sun, wind and dioxines

It has been very clearly shown that people living in northern areas often suffer from vitamin D deficiency and lack of sunlight. Most indicators suggest that toxins in our environment are the root cause of the cancer epidemics, including skin cancer. The sun theory is now proven false, we all need the sun.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Should hospitals use sunbeds to prevent infections?

According to a “Naked Scientist" study, the answer is yes!

We get most of our vitamin D by the action of UVB radiation from sunshine on our skin, however, in the UK between October and March the radiation is too weak for vitamin D to be made. Consequently, our vitamin D levels are at their lowest in March. Is the winter peak in infections due to low vitamin D levels?

It is well established that vitamin D is important to the body's immune system - in the innate immune system it regulates the production of the antimicrobial peptides cathelicidin and beta-defensin 2 (http://""); in the adaptive immune system it controls the activation of T-cells (http://"").

And there appears to be a correlation between vitamin D and infections:From PubMed(http://"")
'Healthcare costs of Staphylococcus aureus and Clostridium difficile infections in Veterans: role of vitamin D deficiency'.

Clostridium difficile and staphylococcal infections are associated with increased morbidity, mortality and healthcare costs. Vitamin D deficiency may also contribute to increased healthcare costs. There is increasing evidence that vitamin D may have an antimicrobial role. We examined the relationship of serum 25(OH)D levels to staphylococcal and C. difficile infections to determine if vitamin D deficiency was associated with adverse outcomes.

Vitamin D deficiency is intimately linked to adverse health outcomes and costs in Veterans with staphylococcal and C. difficile infections in North East Tennessee. We recommend that vitamin D status be checked in patients with these infections and appropriate therapy be instituted to restore vitamin D level to normal in an expeditious manner.

From Digestive Disease Week 2010 conference (http://""):
Higher Resolution Rate of Clostridia Difficile Enteritis in Hospitalized Patients with Normal Vitamin D Levels (Abstract #T1793)

Researchers tracked 83 patients who had been admitted to the hospital who were then diagnosed with C. diff. They measured vitamin D levels in all of the patients, then followed their hospital course. Researchers noted how many patients were still alive after 30 days, and compared the outcome of patients with normal vitamin D levels to those with low levels. They found that up to 40 percent of people, especially in an older age group with multiple illnesses, died from some cause if they developed C. diff during that hospitalization.

Researchers found that those with normal levels of vitamin D had a higher resolution rate, and a lower recurrence rate than those with low vitamin D levels. These findings are consistent with what is currently understood about vitamin D — it plays a role in immune function, may be an important factor in fighting infection, low levels seem to be a marker for not resolving diseases in general and it is associated with higher mortality rates.

So improving vitamin D levels should at least improve infection outcomes, if not reduce infection rates But does anything prevent MRSA or C.Difficile infections? Beta-defensin 3 appears to be effective against MRSA (http://""). Beta-defensin 3 is created by UVB light.

From PubMed (http://"")
UV-B radiation induces the expression of antimicrobial peptides in human keratinocytes in vitro and in vivo

Real-time PCR of normal human keratinocytes revealed a dose-dependent increase of human beta-defensin-2, -3, ribonuclease 7, and psoriasin (S100A7) after UV radiation. This was confirmed at the protein level by intracellular fluorescence-activated cell sorting and in vitro immunofluorescence analysis. Immunohistochemistry of biopsies taken from healthy volunteers exposed to different UV radiation doses revealed enhanced epidermal expression of antimicrobial peptides after UV exposure. This was also confirmed by exposing human skin explants to UV radiation.

So a NB-UVB sunbed would increase a patient's vitamin D levels and produce skin-level antimicrobial peptides including beta-defensin 3.
The Naked Scientists Forum
Life Sciences Physiology & Medicine
Topic started by: Kevan Gelling on 06/05/2010 13:39:57

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Teaching The Correct Use of Sunscreen; Controlled Tanning; Sunburn Prevention and Optimizing Vitamin D Intake.

The Indoor Tanning Community’s BALANCED perspective on teaching the correct use of sunscreen; controlled tanning; sunburn prevention and optimizing vitamin D intake.

How Do Indoor Tanning Salons Teach Sunburn Prevention?

The indoor tanning industry is at the forefront in educating people how to successfully avoid sunburn over the course of one’s life.
Studies of indoor tanners have shown consistently that indoor tanning customers once they begin tanning in a professional salon, are less likely to sunburn than they were before they started tanning.
Studies have also shown that indoor tanners are less likely to sunburn outdoors than are non-tanners.

In recent years sunburn incidence in the general population has been steadily increasing while sunscreen usage has been declining. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the sub-group most likely to sunburn is older men.
Appropriate use of sunscreen outdoors is taught by Indoor Tanning Studios, thus optimizing vitamin D – the “Sunshine Vitamin” intake.

We believe that teaching people strictly to avoid the sun may be making them more likely to sunburn when they do go outside for summer activities – and everyone does go outdoors at some point.

1. Tanning is your body’s natural defense mechanism against sunburn, and indoor tanners have activated this defense against burning; non-tanners are more vulnerable when they inevitably do go outdoors.
2. Indoor tanners are educated at professional tanning facilities how to avoid sunburn outdoors, how to use sunscreens appropriately and how to properly moisturise and care for their skin, both in th estudio and at home.

When you also consider that the majority of people who sunburn are male, according to the AAD, and that 65-70 percent of indoor tanning customers are female, clearly, it is non-tanners who are doing most of the burning outdoors.In the war against sunburn, tanning salons are part of the solution. Those who abstain from sun exposure completely are more likely to sunburn when they inevitably do go outdoors, even if they attempt to wear sunscreen.

The professional indoor tanning community’s SCIENTIFICALLY SUPPORTED POSITION is summed up in this declaration:
Moderate tanning, for individuals who can develop a tan, is the smartest way to maximize the potential benefits of sun exposure while minimizing the potential risks associated with either too much or too little sunlight.

This position is founded on the following tenets:
1. Ultraviolet light exposure from the sun or from a quality indoor tanning unit, with properly rained staff, is essential for human health, and getting it in a non-burning fashion is the smartest way.
2. The professional indoor tanning industry promotes and teaches what we refer to as The Golden Rule of Smart Tanning: Don’t ever sunburn.
3. For the past decade, the indoor tanning industry has been more effective at teaching sunburn prevention than those who promote complete sun avoidance. Since the mid-1990s, tanning industry research suggests that non-tanners sunburn outdoors more often than people who tan indoors. The professional indoor tanning salon industry is part of the solution in the ongoing battle against sunburn and in teaching people how to identify a proper and practical life-long skin care regimen.
4. A tan is the body’s natural protection against sunburn. Your skin is designed to tan as a natural body function, and the body is designed to repair sun damage as a natural process.
5. Every year, millions indoor tanners successfully develop “base tans” before embarking on sunny vacations – tans that, combined with the proper use of sunscreen outdoors, help them prevent sunburn. (Proper use being defined as used to prevent sunburn).
6. There are known physiological and psychological benefits associated with sunlight exposure and there are many other potential benefits that appear linked to sun exposure, but need further research. The potential upside of these benefits is
considerable and deserves further consideration.
7. The body produces Vitamin D naturally when the skin is exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D deficiency has become a recognized epidemic and overzealous sun protection practices have most likely contributed to this.
8. The risks associated with UV overexposure are manageable for anyone who has the ability to develop a tan.