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A respected team of academics from Bristol, England, has burned up the Chicken Littles who have an inordinate fear of dying from skin cancer as a result of being in the sun.
The epidemiologists say that warnings about the risk of skin cancer are preventing people from indulging in a simple human pleasure that boosts happiness, increases levels of vitamin D, and may even reduce the chance of coronary heart disease.
Of course, the report doesn’t come without its opponents. Jean King, director of education for the Cancer Research Campaign, severely criticized the researchers for defending sunbathing: “There’s a very clear and agreed public health message on this issue which we should be careful not to undermine.”
Ah yes, an “agreed public message” – which is totally without scientific justification – the new paradigm of science, which is really the new paradigm of grants and funding. Yep, seems it’s always a “follows the money” deal.
The mushy and totally misleading pronouncements of supposed experts are stupefying. Consider the following sophistry: Prof Jonathan Rees, a dermatologist at Newcastle University, said: “The facts of this are that ultraviolet is the major known cause of skin cancer.”
“The major known cause of skin cancer” is probably overexposure to ultraviolet light (although it may not be). But the type of skin cancer he is referring to is not melanoma, but basal cell cancer of the skin, a benign form of cancer that does not spread to other parts of the body and is easily cured by simple outpatient surgery. The sun is not a major cause, or even a minor cause, of malignant melanoma.
A simple fact that even us normal people can understand, but is seldom mentioned in any of these anti-sun articles: People who work in the sun actually have a reduced risk of malignant melanoma.
Best thing to do:
The best thing you can do for your health is getting out in the sun. Obviously, you don’t have to get out, in the sun unless you want to. You also don’t have to stay out for long periods of time, but at least spend some time gathering rays.
If you’ve bought into the establishment line and are scared of the sun, spread some olive oil on your skin after you come inside (especially if you’ve burned). It’s great for the complexion and will help your skin fight off skin cancer, whether it’s caused by the sun (basal cell) or not (malignant melanoma).