Symptoms, conditions and causes

Darker Skin is Protected Against Skin Cancer BUT Absorb Less Vitamin D

The Skin Color, Sun, and Health Connection

  • Melanin's Role: This skin pigment acts as a natural sunscreen, protecting against harmful UV rays. Darker skin has more melanin, lowering skin cancer risk.

  • The Vitamin D Dilemma: While melanin offers protection, it also blocks the UV needed to make vitamin D. People with darker skin may need more vitamin D for optimal health.

  • Beyond UV: Sunlight also provides beneficial infrared light (NIR). NIR promotes healing, may offer some skin cancer protection, and boosts a powerful antioxidant form of melatonin.

Key Takeaways for Your Health:

  • Know Your Needs: Darker skin likely needs more vitamin D supplementation. Lighter skin may need more folate from leafy greens for sun protection.

  • Timing Matters: Peak UV hours are 10 am-2 pm. Beneficial infrared light is strongest from sunrise to sunset.

  • Balance is Key: Sun exposure is important for health, but everyone needs sun safety practices to minimize skin cancer risk.

Last updated: May 24, 2024 14:16 PM