Summer skincare

I’m no sun worshipper, but I do like to go out walking each day whatever the weather.  Now that summer is here and, in Yorkshire, at least, we seem to be in the middle of a heat wave (I mean, when did THAT ever happen?), applying sun cream has to be a priority.  In fact, I believe we should apply sun protection even in autumn and winter.  The burning rays (UVB) may not get through in autumn and winter, but the aging rays (UVA) do.  The sun damages collagen and elastin, which leads to lines and wrinkles at best, and at worst can cause skin cancer.  Use a suncream that has at least SPF30, and when temperatures soar, try to avoid being out between 11am and 3pm.  Ideally wear a hat or carry a parasol (very chic!) to protect your face.

Choose your sun protection carefully.  Many of the sun creams on the market may actually INCREASE the risk of skin cancer because of ingredients which generate free radicals.  For instance retinyl palmitate, a derivative of vitamin A, has been linked with skin cancer and oxybenzone acts like oestrogen in the body, causing hormone disruption- it is best to switch to a mineral sunscreen containing titanium dioxide or zinc oxide, and apply it at regular intervals.  

Another point to think about is that the sun generates vitamin D in the body which actually protects against cancer, including skin cancer.  In order to get your vitamin D you could spend up to 15 minutes in the sun each day without protection. 

Lastly you can protect yourself from the harmful effects of the sun from the inside by eating beta-carotene rich foods, such as carrots, peppers, squash, peaches, melons and mangoes.  

Stay safe and enjoy the summer!

Janet x

Article Copyright © 2014 40plusandalliswell

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