It's that time of year again. The sun is shining and it's hot, hot, hot. The sun is warming, welcoming, and a great contributor to getting your RDA of Vitamin D, but just like everything else, you can overdo it. Sunburns are not only bad for your health, they're incredibly irritating and uncomfortable. But instead of going out and buying a prepackaged aloe formula with mysterious ingredients, why not make your own sunburn relief remedy at home?Nature Moms explored some key ways to take the bite out of that sunburn which I found thanks to Greenwala. Start off with a cold shower and an ice pack and then apply coconut oil to trap in moisture. Add a few drops of lavender oil mixed with yogurt to the painful areas. For a spray formula, combine Aloe Vera with about 10 drops of peppermint oil and add to a spray bottle. And stay as hydrated as possible.
Find a Healthy Sun Balance
I wrote over at Planet Green about getting enough sun to get sufficient Vitamin D without getting burned in the first place. Vitamin D is a crucial nutrient and the sun is by far the easiest way to get it. Deficiencies are linked to a host of chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, osteoporosis, breast cancer, colon cancer, and ovarian cancer. But how much sun is enough?
In the summer time according to US News Health:
[I]f you're fair skinned, experts say going outside for 10 minutes in the midday sun--in shorts and a tank top with no sunscreen--will give you enough radiation to produce about 10,000 international units of the vitamin. Dark-skinned individuals and the elderly also produce less vitamin D. The government's dietary recommendations are 200 IUs a day up to age 50, 400 IUs to age 70, and 600 IUs over 70.
So consider staying in the sun for 10 to 15 minutes depending on your skin type and then applying safe sunscreen. The Environmental Working Group safe sunscreen site can help you choose a sunscreen that's both effective and safe.
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More on Safe Sunning
Ask Pablo: Does Sunscreen Cause More Skin Cancer Than It Prevents? (Updated)
EWG Releases Must-Read Sunscreen Buying Guide for 2011
Last Call for Sunscreen