Wednesday, November 16, 2011

There is difference in having color and looking like you rolled in Doritos....

Recently, I've really been bothered by the amount of young people that find the need to tan excessively and not acknowledge the dangers they are in or the long-term damage they are doing to themselves.

How To Scare Your Teenage Daughter Out of Tanning

This is a personal issue for me. My mom, who use to tan religiously, was diagnosed with melanoma and was very fortunate to catch it immediately. Her doctor said it could have killed her within two weeks since it spreads so rapidly.

In 2010, more then 2 million cases of skin cancer were diagnosed in this country. Of those, 68,130 cases were melanoma resulting in 11,790 DEATHS, with late stage detection having only a 15% survival rate. Main cause? From being exposed to UV rays.

Deadly as arsenic

Ultraviolet (UV) light is electromagnetic radiation that comes from the sun/tanning beds and generates endorphins. Endorphins generate a rush, such as one gets during exercise, excitement, pain and love. It produces a morphine-like feeling throughout the entire body which easily becomes addictive. This addiction of endorphins that comes through sunlight has been dubbed as "tanorexia," an addiction to tanning.

To me, this raises the question of difference between soliciting tanning and soliciting drugs, tobacco or alcohol. All are addictive. All harm your body and ultimately kill you with little benefit other then vain aspirations. I wish someone would find a difference, because honestly I don't like making that comparison. Unfortunately, in my mind, I can't see the difference.

Some argue that the sun has UV radiation, and it does, which is why it's important to exercise safety with sunscreen. In addition, I personally have always stood on Psalm 121:6 as a promise from God that "the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night." That is obviously a personally interpretation, but something God had given me peace about.

Others argue that tanning beds are a good source of vitamin D. Ok, first, can you tell me why you need vitamin D? I'm guessing no. Most don't understand the importance of vitamins in their diet. In my opinion, this is a weak excuse formulated by the tanning industry to come against the attacks on their industry.

Vitamin D assists in the absorption of calcium in order to avoid osteoporosis and builds up the immune system to protect against autoimmune diseases and cancer. VItamin D comes in the form of supplements, food (mostly plants but is often added to juices and dairy to supplement) and sun/tanning exposure. This made me wonder how much vitamin D is really necessary in a diet.

After some research, I found the recommended daily allowance of vitamin D is 200 IU per day until the age of 50 and 400 IU daily once you are over 50. You can get it through natural sunlight by only about 10 minutes of exposure, three times a week with only about 6-10% of your body exposed to the sun. This generates all the vitamin D you body needs for an entire week. I find it hard to believe a majority of people can't get that in addition to food. If concerned, vitamins are also available, which I actually think is cheaper then a tanning package.

In addition to the health concerns, tanning ages you so quickly and gives the worst wrinkles. Why do you think so many celebrities are on the paler side? This always confused me, people think tan is hot but celebrities aren't really tan.

Talk about tanning gone bad, yet Ann is stunning!

For some reason, this information offends people. I think everyone should understand what they are doing to their body and the long term effects. Understanding motives are also important. What are your motives? What are your addictions? Do they line up with what God would have for us?

Be smart people. Respect yourselves.

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