Dr. Cedric Garland shares how much time women should spend in the sun to reduce their risk of developing cancer.
Dr. Cedric Garland, Dr.P.H., F.A.C.E.:
Depends on the woman. If she is very fair skinned, she might be only able to spend a couple of minutes without her skin turning pink, but if she is a woman of color, she might be able to spend considerably longer.
The average person needs to be out about ten minutes a day with a hat with a big brim and keep the sunscreen in their pocket during that ten minutes because you can’t make vitamin D with it. It should be ideally within an hour or so in the middle of the day, and sunscreen should be in the pocket during that period because it prevents making vitamin D.
But after that it doesn’t matter. It’s just, there’s no additional benefit for more than ten minutes in the sun. So it would be unwise to sun worship just in order to make vitamin D. It’s much wiser to get ten minutes or so every day when the sky allows and not bother with laying out or sunbathing or anything like that.
About Dr. Cedric Garland, Dr.P.H., F.A.C.E.:
Dr. Cedric Garland, Dr.P.H., F.A.C.E., is adjunct professor in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine at the University of California, San Diego. His research interests include, epidemiology of breast cancer, colon cancer, leukemia, melanoma, multiple sclerosis and ovarian cancer.
Visit Dr. Cedric Garland at the University of California, San Diego