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Monday, July 17, 2006

Why My Kids Don't Wear Sunscreen

When my son was 6 months old and could “officially” begin wearing sun block, I made sure I got the highest SPF number for him. I was doing my good-mom duty every time I slathered this “protection” on his baby soft skin. Years later, after researching and applying common sense, I now know differently.

Similar to the drug industry’s manipulation, the sunscreen industry has bombarded us with the dangers of the sun for years and years. However what they fail to mention is that you are more likely to develop cancer from wearing sunscreen than from going without.

Smart sun protection doesn’t come in the form of a toxic chemical lotion that your body absorbs. Whatever you put on your skin enters your body’s system. Sunscreen causes damage to your body’s natural system and increases your risk of cancer. The ingredients in sunscreen are more likely to cause skin cancer than normal exposure to the sun. Studies have shown that the highest skin cancer rates are found in those who use the most amount of sun block! Now imagine a young child being exposed to liberal amounts of this toxic substance year after year. Imagine how much damage this is doing to their health over time!

Your body needs sun exposure daily. Sunscreen blocks the body’s ability to absorb crucial Vitamin D from the sun. You want to avoid getting burned, but that is done by wearing a hat, lightweight long sleeved clothing and pants. Stay out of the sun during the hours of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. when the rays are the most penetrating. Just use common sense. If you're laying out in the sun all day long to get a tan, it's not good for your body, regardless of whether or not you are wearing sunblock. Your body needs at least 10 minutes a day of sun exposure to get the vitamins it needs, but overdoing it goes against good sense.

Eating a healthy diet rich in antioxidants is an important factor in avoiding skin cancer. Another study has shown that eating foods with the proper omega fats (6:3 ratio) is also crucial for preventing melanoma.

I'm not a medical professional and you need to decide what is right for your health and the health of your family. Do the research. As with everything else in life, you will find arguments for both sides of the debate. You'll need to decide which resonates more strongly and profoundly in your life. My children and I don't wear sunscreen. We get a healthy dose of sunshine daily. If we're going to be exposed to the sunlight for extended periods of time, we choose to use ways of protecting our skin without ingesting harmful cancer-causing chemicals.

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