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SKIN CANCER: Is sunlight beneficial or harmful?

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The role of immune system strengthening medicinal mushroom extracts (Phellinus linteus, Grifola frondosa) in prevention – According to a U.S. survey, regular and moderate sunbathing of 10 to 20 minutes a day (avoiding the dangerous time period between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.) may prevent more than 10 times as much deaths caused by cancer than the current number of melanoma deaths!

Skin cancer is the most commonly occurring cancer amongst Caucasians. Main types of skin cancer is the squamous and basal, as well as melanoma, which although is the least frequently occurring type, accounts for about 79% of skin cancer death. This is mostly because of its ability to spread.skin cancer pic.

The main features of initial melanoma moles may include asymmetric growth, irregular contour, multi-colored (black, light, and dark shades), larger than 6mm in size, changing size, shape, surface and color. A regular self-examination of one’s skin may reduce the mortality rate caused by melanoma by up to 63%.

Sunburns and intense exposure to the sun during the childhood years may increase the risk of melanoma by up to 8 times. The use of broad sprectrum, high protection sunscreen on children with freckle skin decreases the formation of mole pigment by 30-40% and thus reduce the chances of developing melanoma in adulthood. However, some studies conclude that the use of sunscreen may increase the incidence of melanoma because it may cause for one to feel free to remain in direct sunlight. Surveys show that about. 25% longer time is spent sunbathing with an SPF 30 sun lotion as compared to an SPF 10 lotion.

Although it is indisputable that sunlight may cause skin cancer, people with white skin who have been increasingly exposed to sunlight have shown an increased resistance against many other common cancers (i.e.gullet, stomach, intestine, pancreas, gallbladder, bile duct, ovary, prostate, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, bladder, kidney, uterus, lung and breast cancer). Researchers believe that this is due to the fact that sunlight promotes the synthesis of vitamin D, of which 90-95% is produced by sunlight in caucasians. Twenty minutes of sunbathing in direct sunlight may produce 10,000 units of vitamin D3 through the skin. However, a high SPF sunscreen hinders the formation of vitamin D within the body.

The effects of vitamin D against type I. diabetes and schizophrenia have also been shown, and that low levels of vitamin D may promote coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attacks as well. Overweight people usually have lower levels of vitamin D, making them particularly vulnerable. The latest research has indicated that overall, the recent anti-sun "movement" has done more harm than good, and this can be measured in human lives.

The development of melanoma may also be fascilitated by excessive, strenuous exercise (i.e. marathon running) and organ transplantations; in both cases a suppressed immune functioning is to blame. The UV radiation of sunlight may also suppress immune system functioning, therefore, it is worth supporting the immune system in the summer months as well in order to maintain the beneficial effects of sunlight (particulary to counteract sunlight-induced skin cancer). In the future, medicinal mushroom extracts may play a role in prevention (i.e. Phellinus linteus and Grifola frondosa extracts), along with standardized apigenin flavonoid extracts. Under experimental conditions, broccoli and it’s apigenin extracts have especially shown metastasis-inhibiting effects in sulforaphane melanoma. Folk medicine also greatly appreciates the Grifola frondosa for it’s vitamin D forming effect.

Chances of survival for those already diagnosed with cancer may also increase with adequate and high vitamin D levels; those diagnosed in the spring or summer months have shown a significantly higher chance of survival as compared to those diagnosed in the winter. Naturally, however, those prone to skin cancer need increased protection against the harmful effects of sunlight.

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