Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Tuesday Tidbits - Fun in the Sun

Lycopene-rich watermelon
Certain foods can turbocharge your sun protection.  A 2010 study published in the British Journal of Dermatology suggests, that the potent antioxidant lycopene found in foods such as watermelon, guava, pink grapefruit and tomatoes acts as a sunscreen from within.  Women whose diets included 16 milligrams of lycopene (the amount in about two cups of diced watermelon) daily for 12 weeks showed a reduction in damaging effects of UVA and UVB rays, including sunburns and cellular damage.  Of course this doesn’t mean you can skip the sunscreen.

Vitamin D strengthens your bones and immune system, reduces your risk for breast, colon, kidney, and ovarian cancers, and regulates at least a thousand different genes controlling virtually every tissue in your body.  The American Medical Association has recommended 10 minutes of direct sun (sans sunscreen) several times a week to get that dose of D, but the American Academy of Dermatology says no amount of unprotected sun exposure is OK.  AAD recommends getting 1,000-2,000 IU of vitamin D through diet and D3 supplements.

The SPF number on sunscreen doesn’t mean much.  Conventional wisdom suggests that SPF will give you twice the protection of SPF 15, and SPF 100 will offer twice the coverage of SPF 50.  If only.  The sky-high numbers are a marketing ploy.

Triad of doom at the beach
Skin cancer accounts for about half of all U.S. cancers - and you can get cancer on areas not exposed to the sun.  Check your birthday suit on your birthday, or more frequently. Wear protective clothing, stay out of midday sun and use sunscreen to increase your protection.
Facts from Women’s Health, Shape, OnHealth 

With watermelon, hats and rashguards packed, 
we're off to the beach! 

What are your fun plans for the week?


  1. 3 days of beach, running, hiking, winetasting and family fun! Yahoo for Union Pier!

  2. Very interesting about the food sun protection. I've got one more day of watching volleyball and I'll be running and doing some orienteering with my brother after that. Hope you guys have a great trip!

  3. Have a great time! We just back to back weekends with friends and we're off to the beach in 2 weeks for a week of R+R. Enjoy yourselves!

  4. We just returned from the beach. Such great family time. Have a blast and wear your sunscreen!

  5. Have so much fun at the beach! WEar sunscreen. :) Thanks for the reminder about the sunscreen...my mom just came home from the beach fried because she doesn't wear sunscreen. ugggh!

  6. Having skin cancer myself, I'm on the guard...
    ...and I like this particular benefit of one of my favorite foods: WATERMELON. YUM! Thanks for the info!


Have you tried this gear? Something similar you like better? Something I should try? Let me know by leaving a comment!

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