Six Simple Steps To Prevent Skin Cancer
By Charles Hopkins
Published 09/20/2007 | Health
Now that summer is here many people are spending more time outdoors
enjoying the warmth of the sun. Studies have shown that sunlight is
actually needed to prevent certain cancers (lung, colon, breast and
prostate), diabetes, multiple sclerosis and asthma. However, people can
often get too much of a good thing. You have to be careful when you go
outdoors. If you want to prevent skin cancer, it is very important to
follow these steps.
1) Wear a hat with two to three-inch brim all around and wear
long-sleeved shirt and pants. Tightly woven fabrics like denim are
better than loosely woven cotton or linen. Wearing a hat and protective
clothing is more effective than using a sunscreen according to recent
studies. This is especially important for those who are fair-skinned,
turn red after 10 minutes of unprotected sun exposure, who have 100
moles and who have a history of skin cancer either self or family. Look
for clothing that is made from sun-protective fabrics. There is also a
laundry additive that has a UV protectant that can be used to wash
2) Apply sunscreen properly 15 to 30 minutes before going outdoors.
Cover the exposed parts of your body thoroughly with the right
sunscreen. Use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher. Apply sunscreen
even on cloudy days because 80 % of the sun's UV rays pass through the
clouds. Also protect your lips by applying a lip balm that has a
sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher and re-apply sunscreen every two
hours while outdoors especially after swimming and if you sweat
3) Try not to stay outdoors more than 20 minutes during the peak
hours when the sun's rays are the strongest that is from 10 am to 4 pm.
4) The best sunscreen, however, is an internal sunscreen built in
with nutrition. Eat plenty of chlorella, goji berries, raspberries,
blackberries, blueberries, astaxanthin, carrots and nutrient-rich super
foods to boost your skin's natural UV protection (takes about 30 days
of nutrition to boost skin levels). Add foods to your diet that are
rich in carotenoids such as tomatoes, peaches, broccoli, watermelons
and spinach. Carotenoids are powerful antioxidants and protect against
the sun's damaging UV rays.
5) Do a monthly skin exam. Do you know that skin cancers can
develop in parts of your body that are not exposed to the sun? Look for
moles, spots or freckles that are asymmetric, have an irregular border,
variation in color and are more than 6 millimeters (the size of a
pencil eraser). See a dermatologist if you find any moles, freckles or
spots that look suspicious.
6) If you take medications, be aware that some prescription drugs
such as antibiotics, diuretics, tricyclic antidepressants and
over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like Aleve and
Advil can make your skin vulnerable to sun damage.