The summer is here, and outdoor activities will be the safest option for entertainment this year because of the need for social distancing. One thing that never changes with outdoor fun is the desire or need for a healthy tan. Unfortunately, too many people do not tan safely, which can increase the risks of early aging and skin cancer. If you want to enjoy the serotonin boost and benefit of additional vitamin D, then make sure you are tanning correctly and safely with these five tips.
1. Avoid Sunbeds
While many salons and healthy tanning spas claim that the use of sunbeds is safer than outdoor tanning, they do not explain that sunbeds offer the wrong UV for your healthy tan. UVB is the UV that outdoor tanning exposes you to, and it benefits the production of vitamin D. Tanning beds provide massive amounts of UVA, which does not stimulate vitamin production and can increase your skin cancer risk by nearly 75%.
2. Adhere To Tanning Times
Did you know that your skin can reach a point where it is no longer physically possible to produce more melanin, which is the pigment necessary for your tan? While you may think placing two cucumbers over your eyes and lounging by the pool for an all-day tanning session will speed up your tanning process, it will not. Most people reach maximum melanin production within two to three hours, which means staying poolside any longer than that is mostly pointless for tan production.
3. Reduce UV Intensity
When stretched out trying to tan, make sure you take several breaks. While you may have two to three hours of tanning planned, you should not do it in one lengthy session. Finding time to cool off in the shade is necessary to reduce the risk of sunburn. Also, taking frequent shade sessions will help create a healthier and long-lasting tan for the summer. Shade breaks are beneficial because they reduce the UV intensity you experience during your tanning time.
4. Apply Sunscreen
Most people will go for a bottle of SPF-something for a sunscreen. While you want to find an SPF product, it is also necessary to find one with the right levels of protection. You should search for a bottle with the phrase ‘broad-spectrum’ on the bottle or the word high with the UVA logo. Most people will enjoy an SPF30 product over higher ranges, like SPF50. The higher numbers can feel chalkier, and people are often less inclined to put them on every two hours as instructed. You should also consider skin tone. While most organizations recommend SPF30, people with darker complexions may only need SPF15.
5. Focus On Diet
Lycopene is the body’s form of self-SPF protection. Eating foods rich in specific types of antioxidants, like polyphenols, can boost the body’s lycopene protection by up to 33%. Most red or orange fruits and vegetables, like tomatoes, contain the antioxidant necessary for the increased production and protection. You can also help speed up your tan by taking a daily beta-caretone supplement of 25g.
A healthy summer tan can help you reduce sunburn and look great. If you want other healthy living tips, check out other posts on The Calorie Myths.