"If there’s a light in everybody, send out your ray of sunshine"*

Posted by Katie L. Carroll on December 18, 2010 in Anecdote, Nature |

I have a confession: I’m something of a sun junkie. And living in New England, I find myself jonesing for some of those good, warm rays as winter rolls around. By the time winter ends, I’m sure I’ll be “looking all pale and tragic” (five stars for the first person to comment with the correct movie reference!).

When the sun is actually shining this time of year, I try to get outside for what I call my “15 minutes a day.” It doesn’t always happen, and when it does, it’s not always in optimal conditions because I often have my head covered. I’ve read (and I can’t for the life of me remember where I read this) that the back section of your head near the crown is the most absorptive part of the body.

There’s just something about being out in the sun and fresh air a little bit everyday that invigorates me. And let’s be honest, my self-esteem gets a nice boost when I have at least a little bit of a tan (as opposed to the aforementioned pale-and-tragic look). It’s not only anecdotal evidence that supports my “15 minutes a day” theory, either.

Actual science backs this claim (and I’m not talking about overexposure to the sun…we all know skin cancer, sun spots, and wrinkles are bad…moderate exposure is key). The aptly named SAD (seasonal affective disorder), which can make you moody, tired, and depressed (admittedly, similar to the symptoms of PMS), usually occurs in conjunction with the lack of sunlight in the winter. Proper sun exposure also helps your body produce vitamin D, which is important for strong bones.

Okay, is this starting to sound too much like a commercial for sun? Well, I don’t care. I really do love the sun. Without it, we don’t have plants, food, animals, earth, life. I’d say it’s about tied with water as the most essential element of life, so you really can’t over emphasize its importance.

All this talk about the sun has made me a little twitchy. Unfortunately it’s night right now. I hope it’s not cloudy tomorrow. I need to get my fix before I start to go through withdrawal! My sun, my precious (please tell me someone knows this book/movie reference!).

*Jason Mraz

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  • Nautilus says:

    Hmm, living in deep water as I do, I can't claim kinship with the sun's rays falling upon me. But I surely appreciate its role in our ecosystem!

    I do hope you're getting your vitamin D this winter season. Have you read that people living in New England don't get enough from the sun this time of year?

  • Katie L. Carroll (KT) says:

    Ah yes, I suppose water would be more important to you in the whole sun/water essentiality ratio.

    I have read that New Englanders are prone to vitamin D deficiencies in the winter. What a bummer! I am pleased to see the sun is out today…I'm off to get my fix.

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