We all know what happens following prolonged exposure to sunlight and hence avoid sun exposure and prefer staying indoors. But do not completely avoid the sun as limited sun exposure has numerous health benefits. Sunlight is the easiest and healthiest way to get vitamin D. But, you do not need to tan or burn your skin to get vitamin D. Sun exposure that makes the skin a bit red produces the equivalent of 10,000 to 25,000 IU of vitamin D in the body. Here are the top health benefits of sunlight:
SUPPPORTS HEALTHY BONES: Sunlight helps the body produce vitamin D that stimulates the absorption of bone-strengthening calcium. This leads to reduced risk of bone diseases, fractures and osteoporosis. In addition, a high level of vitamin D in the body is associated with a lower rate of virtually all types of fractures.
BOOSTS IMMUNITY: When exposed to sunlight, the body makes vitamin D to support proper functioning of the T cells that contribute to immune defenses. Strong immune system helps body defend invading organisms and antigens. Vitamin D has been found to help modulate the innate and adaptive immune responses. Furthermore, vitamin D deficiency appears to be linked to an increased susceptibility to infection and many autoimmune diseases.
IMPROVE SLEEP: Regular exposure to morning sunlight helps improve sleep-cycle. Due to sunlight exposure, the optic nerve sends a message to the gland in the brain that produces melatonin, a hormone associated with sleep onset. In addition, sunlight helps regulate circadian rhythms (24-hour cycle that regulates biochemical, physiological and behavioural processes that control your sleep cycle) for a better night’s sleep.
REJUVINATES AGING EYES: Vitamin D3 plays a key role in preventing age-related macular degeneration, which is the most common cause of blindness in the elderly. It helps aging eyes by reducing inflammation, clearing amyloid beta and improving visual function. But, Avoid long-term exposure to bright sunlight as it may contribute to the development of cataract.
IMPROVES METABOLISM: Sunlight is said to improve metabolism rate speeding up weight loss. Many research studies have shown the effect of UV on suppression of obesity. On the other hand, vitamin D deficiency may contribute to fat accumulation!
EASES DEPRESSION: Serotonin is neurotransmitter that regulates appetite, sleep, memory and mood. In addition, serotonin plays a role in susceptibility to depression and suicide. Regular sunlight exposure can naturally increase the serotonin levels in your body to help lessen stress and fight off mild depression.
Now that you know the health benefits of sunlight, make sure you let sunlight shine your health!