Your Health

Who Needs More Sun? Maybe You


Umbrellas, hats, and sunscreen block Vitamin D as well as harmful rays iStockphoto hide caption

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The sunshine vitamin is under review. The American Academy of Dermatology has issued a new statement acknowledging that people who regularly cover-up and wear sunscreen to protect their skin from wrinkles and cancer may be at risk for vitamin D insufficiency. What's a health-savvy person to do?

David M. Pariser, MD, FAAD, president of the American Academy of Dermatology says,

The vitamin D position statement supports the Academy's long-held conviction on safe ways to get this important vitamin — through a healthy diet which incorporates foods naturally rich in vitamin D, vitamin D-fortified foods and beverages, and vitamin D supplements.

But not all experts are on the same page. Listen to this week's "Your Health" podcast from NPR for my interview with Vitamin D researcher Michael Holick, who directs the Bone Health Care Clinic at the Boston University Medical Center. Holik makes the case that a little exposure to UV rays is the best way to ensure adequate Vitamin D.

(To listen to the podcast, read past the jump)

Everyone agrees Vitamin D is important — a deficiency can increase the risk of osteoporosis, fractures, auto-immune diseases and some cancers.

Listen to this week's podcast here:



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The debate about much Vitamin D is enough is getting louder. Next month, the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine will convene a panel to discuss the latest research.

What's your sun strategy?



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