Ohhh… Our Struggle With The Sun.

” People are beginning to realize that it is cheaper and more advantageous to prevent disease rather than to cure it.” – Henry Lindlahr

When I talk organics, I am not only talking about fruits, vegetables, and meat products. There are so many ways beyond this to incorporate organics into your every day lives.

I know during this day and age so many people desire darker, more tanned skin tones (why can’t we just be happy in our own skin?). Now, I know I do not need to lecture you on how harmful the sun is for the human body however, I bet most of you have no idea how harmful the stuff that is supposed to protect us from the sun is…

That’s right, I’m talkin’ sun-screen.

zincoxide

Unless you are using Zinc Oxide or Titanium Oxide to protect your skin (which I know most of you are not because I hardly ever see individuals with a white layer on top of their skin), you are using a chemical sunscreen.

These chemical sunscreens do not sit on top of the skin, they soak in and quickly find their way into our bloodstreams. Once in the bloodstream, these chemicals have the ability to spread all throughout the human body, and they are detectable in the blood for up to 2 days after application!! The chemicals can be found in our blood, urine, and even breast milk!! If you were a new mother, would you be okay with your baby ingesting these chemicals?

I realize we inhale, ingest, and absorb different products and chemicals into our bodies every day, and these sun-screen chemicals would be just fine if they were safe, but they aren’t. Dr. Perry, a member of the Medical Advisory Board for the Dr. Oz Show, explains that there are 17 chemicals that makeup our sunscreens that have been approved by the FDA. 15 of these chemicals are what keep the sunscreens clear, 9 of them are endocrine disruptors. Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that interfere with our natural endocrine (or hormone) functions and systems. The ones found in sunscreen can cause any of the following medical problems:

  • abnormal fetus development
  • early puberty and premature breast development in young females
  • small and undescended testicles in young males
  • low sperm counts and infertility
  • development of breast and ovarian cancers in women
  • development of prostate cancer in men
  • development of free radicals leading to cancer

    spray-sunscreen

Here’s a list of the WORST sun-screen brands (if you have any… throw them away!!):

  • Coppertone
  • Banana Boat
  • CVS
  • Equate
  • Hampton Sun
  • Neutrogena

So, who are the good guys?

Mineral sunscreens, those that contain zinc and/or titanium oxide, create a physical barrier on the skin. This barrier blocks both UV-A and UV-B rays, protecting us from cancer, wrinkles, skin discolouration, sunburn, and all of the nasty side effects I mentioned earlier. In order to achieve this “broad spectrum” protection, you need to look for a mineral sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.

Personally, my favourite organic sunscreen brand badgeris “Badger”. They have every type you need from sport, baby, kids, water-proof, etc. I REALLY love that they have a specially formulated sunscreen designed for face application on a daily basis. It does not smell, it is creamy, easy to apply, and works effectively. The only downfall is they are very thick and white. Just keep rubbing… it will blend in, believe me. I took a few bottles with me during my South East Asia travels last year; not once did I suffer from a sunburn, but the best part was knowing I was not absorbing any harsh chemicals.

Keep an eye out for these brands: Ilia, Josh Rosebrook, KEYS Solar Rx, Suntegrity, and DeVita.

If you recall from my previous post, only products that contain at least 95% organic products are allowed to display the “100% Organic” emblem on their products, which makes mineral sunscreens easy to find among the hundreds of chemical sunscreens on the shelves. Next time you are out shopping, take a peak for some of these products. Protecting your skin is the perfect start to improving your overall health.

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4 thoughts on “Ohhh… Our Struggle With The Sun.

  1. Katie,

    Going on vacation with friends, one thing I constantly notice is the terrible choice of sunscreen lotions they prefer to use. Sometimes they wouldn’t even pack a bottle of sun screen lotion; ultimately choosing tanning oil instead. By the end of the week they would all complain about how bad their sunburns are while peeling like an iguana shedding its skin (sorry for that gross image, but it’s an unfortunate symptom the desire of tanning brings). I always make sure to choose a sunscreen lotion with high levels of SPF when going outside in the sun, but thanks to your blog, now I know that isn’t good enough either. I had no idea how bad most sunscreens are! Next time I go on vacation anywhere, I will make sure to pick up a bottle of Badger. It’s amazing how far an organic lifestyle can take you; before your posts I thought it was mainly about dietary choices, but now I see it extends further than that. If were going to take care of our body’s using strictly organic methods, skin should be a top priority. Furthermore, I appreciate the way you break your blogs into separate segments: Who are the good guys, Keep an eye out, various bullet points etc. It makes it incredibly simple to navigate through the important information you share.

    Great post!

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  2. Katie,
    Your post on sunscreen is perfect timing. Summer is approaching and like most people, I am getting ready to purchase sunscreen for my son and myself. However, after reading your post I will have to re-think my options. I have always bought Banana Boat for my son and it’s very concerning to read that chemicals in sunscreen can cause all types of abnormalities. I will definitely take your advice and stop using those brands again. I really appreciate this post. Thanks,

    Julie-Ann

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  3. Katie,

    I really liked your post this week. I’ll be working at another camp this summer, as well as working a different weekend job with children going on outtrips, and I know that protecting ourselves from the sun is going to be a prominent theme. I never really considered the negative effects from sunscreen, because you’re always taught that the sun will impact your body in a worse way than that spray protection will. However, I think it is important that we consider *how* we protect our bodies, and what we are using to protect them. If we’re using chemicals to prevent ourselves from being sunburnt, is it really any better? Your posts make me develop a newfound appreciation for organics (food, products, you name it). Great work!

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  4. Wow, working outside in the summer, I always have to have sunscreen on, and I always used coppertone, and didn’t realize that it was actually bad for me, even though it did the job. I will try some of the healthier methods mentioned to try and improve my health, while still protecting my skin from the sun. I really liked how well organized the post was too, makes it much easier to read and retain the information. Thanks

    Like

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