There. I said it. And it wasn’t funny or anything.
On that note, here’s me in 1984, laying out in the sun. I have dozens of pictures just like this, because I pretty much did this all the time. I planned my days around “sun time.”
Here’s me, also in 1984, showing off my tan line. I’m so proud of it!
My friend Chelle is also showing her tan line, but she could not access her tan line without violating my blog’s G-rating. So I made Chelle a little white paper skirt.
Now notice the expression on my face in both pictures. That was before I got braces and, for some unknown reason, I thought my smile looked better with my mouth closed.
And like every other 98 pound Sophomore, I probably thought I was fat. Mercy!
Actually, now that I look at it, I’m wondering if the sun burned my mouth into that position.
Thank you very much, Johnson’s Baby Oil. Is it any wonder my parents bought me a beach towel with this logo?
Just out of curiosity, I did an age-progression to see what will happen to me if I were to continue tanning at this rate, using nothing but baby oil as my sunscreen of choice. It is estimated that when I’m 50, I will look like this.
Notice the facial expression. Coincidence? I think not.
See, even when I try to give you a serious post with no introduction, I lead you down a bunny trail. Is it any wonder every single post takes me like 6 hours to write and I’m always tired?
This post really does have a point. I promise. And the point is, despite all the hype about the dangers of sun exposure—and my obvious lack of discretion with SPF-free mineral oil—It is really, really important that we do NOT completely avoid the sun.
Jordan S. Rubin, N.M.D,. Ph.D. author of The Maker’s Diet (a book I love very much and highly endorse) says this about the sun:
Critics claim that exposure to the UV rays of the sun cause higher rates of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer. This might be true for a small population segment—those with compromised immune systems who don’t consume adequate nutrients (especially healthy fats). However, the people who actually get the most exposure to sunlight in different parts of the world exhibit the lowest incidence of skin cancer. The only logical explanation is that exposure to sunlight is not unhealthy.
What is unhealthy is exposure to sunlight with the diets we consume. Rex Russell, M.D., notes that when sunlight activates the phytochemicals in healthy foods, consumption of those foods not only blocks the harmful effects of UV rays, but they also produce ‘antiviral, antibacterial, and anticancer components, as well as pest repellents.’”
The skin and the sun’s rays work together to produce vitamin D in the body. When the sun’s UV rays come into contact with the skin, DNA molecules quickly convert more than 99.9 percent of the rays’ energy into harmless heat. Meanwhile, UV rays stimulate the skin’s production of vitamin D, which is essential for immune response, mood stability, and bone health. In fact, inadequate doses of vitamin D have been linked to seasonal affective disorder (SAD), osteomalacia (a softening of the bones because of defective bone mineralization), and, intriguingly, increased premature cancer mortality.
That’s right. An increase in cancer mortality when we don’t get enough sunlight.
Did you get that? Lives SAVED by sun exposure? 1984-Sandy is jumping up and down and saying “like, totally!” With a closed-mouth smile, of course.
And last but not least, check out this one-minute blurb about Vitamin D depression.
Clearly that man has had no Botox whatsoever. Or hair implants. I’m just sayin’.
Like all things in life, approach sun exposure in moderation. To get adequate amounts of vitamin D, you need to expose your skin (without sunscreen) to direct sunlight for about 10 to 15 minutes a day. Be sure to apply sunscreen before your skin burns and reapply often for the remainder of the day. And, no, baby oil does NOT count.
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