I saved this article about some important news concerning Omega-3 fatty oils and skin cancer.  Check it out this excerpt:

Omega-3 Supplements May Prevent Skin Cancer

Medical News Today – February 27, 2013

Consuming omega-3 fish oils can help to prevent skin cancer, according to the first clinical trial exploring the influence of fish oils on the skin immunity of humans.

The study was conducted by a team of researchers from the University of Manchester and funded by the Association for International Cancer Research, and examined the effect of taking omega-3 on 79 healthy participants.

Findings of the study, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, revealed that consuming regular doses of fish oils increases immunity to sunlight.

It directly decreases sunlight-induced immunity suppression – called immunosuppression – which affects the body’s power to combat skin cancer and infection…

Sounds good so far.  But how much protection does taking omega-3 supplements provide?

The volunteers consumed a 4g dose of omega-3 – approximately one and a half portions of oily fish each day. Then they were exposed to either 8, 15, or 30 minutes of summer midday sun in Manchester using a specific light machine.

A number of other participants took a placebo before being exposed to the sunlight machine.

Immunosuppression was shown to be 50 percent lower in the subjects that took the omega-3 and were exposed to 8 and 15 minutes of sunshine compared with the volunteers who did not take the supplement. Little to no impact on those in the 30 minute group was shown…

So the way I read this, omega-3s may help limit the effects of small amounts of exposure to sunlight.  Spend more than 15 minutes or so and the benefits start to fall-away.

You can read more by going to:

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/256917.php

To me, this is a really important discovery.  If you use sun screen all of the time, your body may have trouble synthesizing enough vitamin D.  So how is one to balance the risk/rewards?

Since only ten or fifteen minutes of sun exposure is necessary for optimum vitamin D production, a logical way to approach this might be to supplement with fish oil and then spend 15 minutes or less in the sun.  I’m sure it makes sense not to do that in the middle of the day, of course.  And please remember that Pat and I aren’t doctors, so you should check with yours first, especially if you are using medications that might make you more sun-sensitive.

Feel good and keep smiling!  Pattie

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