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Skin cancer


Sunscreen has its own side effects

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Regarding the Tuesday editorial "Revamp sunscreen image": Aspirin producers are raking in big profits as a result of the notion that an "aspirin a day" will prevent heart attacks and strokes. Never mind the big negative side effect of stomach bleeding. If you believe that artery disease is caused by an aspirin deficiency, I have a deal for you on a bridge in Brooklyn. Studies have shown that a small piece of dark chocolate per day has the same blood thinning effect as aspirin, without the negative side effects. Diet and lifestyle are the answers.
Protecting yourself from excessive sun exposure is important. The operative word here is "excessive." The idea you are promoting that you not leave your home unless you "slop on sunscreen" is contributing to a growing epidemic of vitamin D deficiency, especially in the northern two thirds of the country. Among the definitions of "slop" Webster lists: "liquid refuse." Studies are showing that some of the chemicals in the products that you suggest to "slop on" may be contributing to skin cancer. Vitamin D is essential for: absorption of other nutrients, heart function, prevention of cancer, thyroid function, enhancing immunity. Bare skin exposure to the sun for 15-20 minutes, three times per week is the best way to get your vitamin D3.
Better ideas to protect from excessive exposure: "Seek shade, Slip on a covering, Slap on a hat."
Fred C. Howard
Snohomish

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