commentary · experiences · health

Soak it up!

The groundhog spoke on February 2, 2016 to his faithful followers; the clouds gathered that fateful day, blocking any remote chance of the little fellow seeing his shadow.

On that same day, the ground shook in the North East where people fell to their knees, bowing to the almighty ‘hog’. No more hiding in our burrows; the time would quickly be upon the masses where the bright sun and warmer temperatures comingled creating the perfect pathway to rejuvenation.

Well, it’s here! The time has now come; the sun is out, the temps are reasonable, and the weekends are beckoning for us all to get outside and rekindle our love affair with the great outdoors.

So, get thyself to the beach, to the woods, to the road right outside your door. Walk for exercise, walk for fun; your body will thank you in so many ways. Your muscles will say bravo, your mind will be free to roam or to converse with a friend – or yourself-, and your skin will soak in the vitamin D it has been missing all winter long.

cropped-5651.jpg“Research, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, shows that those with the lowest vitamin D levels have more than double the risk of dying from heart disease and other causes over an eight-year period compared with those with the highest vitamin D levels. The researchers cite “decreased outdoor activity” as one reason that people may become deficient in vitamin D. (1)

Despite our concerns that sun exposure is dangerous for our health, getting vitamin D from the sun is clearly a benefit.  Some researchers believe that being outside for short amounts of time is now thought to be okay; key word short. We do get vitamin D from sun exposure, but spending too much time in the sun without adequate protection can be problematic when it comes to cancer concerns. So, be smart; getting a little unprotected exposure is okay but using sunscreens and hats etc., is beneficial as well (and that comes from someone who had basal cell carcinoma on her face).

Paying attention to our physical health is always important, but one of the hidden bonuses to getting outside and walking, is that your soul will be renewed, refreshed, and invigorated. You will be replenished for the week ahead of you; body, mind, and soul.

(1)http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/heart/articles/2008/06/23/time-in-the-sun-how-much-is-needed-for-vitamin-d

 

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