An Expert’s Take On The Link Between Sunscreen Use And Vitamin D Deficiency

A 1995 JAMA study concluded that daily SPF 17 sunscreen application doesn’t have a significant effect on vitamin D levels. However, a recent report that The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association published suggested that sunscreen use could lead to vitamin D deficiency.

Then another research work that the British Journal of Dermatology released earlier this year said that you can use sunscreen without any compromise on your vitamin D markers. So, what is the truth? Can sunblock cause a decrease in vitamin D or not?

Sunscreen And Vitamin D Deficiency

Former president of the American Academy of Dermatology, Dr. Henry W. Lim says that sunscreen usage can cause vitamin D deficiency. However, this doesn’t mean that you should stop using sunscreen. That’s because the relationship between sunscreen and vitamin D is a lot more complicated than just a simple yes-or-no answer.

According to Lim, sunscreen blocks the sun’s rays and disturbs vitamin D synthesis in the skin. However, for it to reduce the levels of the bone health boosting vitamin, you need to apply a huge amount. This is something that doesn’t happen in the real world. What’s more, most people do not wear sunblock all the time.

Those who do wear sunscreen all the time and in loads along with keeping themselves covered against harmful light, they have higher odds of developing vitamin D deficiency.

Why Do People Use Sunscreen?

Sunscreen is used for protecting against the UV rays of the sun which can cause DNA damage. This harm overtime can lead to skin cancer. Just because sunblock has the potential to cause vitamin D deficiency, it cannot be urged to stop its use.

You can always keep your vitamin D levels optimal to ensure that you are not at high risk of bone thinning and fractures. This can be done by consuming multivitamin pills if your vitamin D markers are low. Moreover, there are also natural food sources of vitamin D which include salmon, sardines, yogurt, egg yolks, etc.

The Importance Of Sunscreen Application

Keeping in view that daily usage of sunscreen is not likely to cause vitamin D deficiency, because typically mediocre amounts are applied, there is no reason to worry. Apart from preventing skin cancer, sunscreen is also beneficial because it prevents premature aging of the skin which is triggered by ultraviolent exposure.

It also prevents the formation of brown spots and keeps your skin tone even. Furthermore, it also prevents sunburns and skin irritation. Sunscreens are also convenient to apply. You can either get a lotion or spray, whichever you find more suitable.

When you purchase your sunscreen, make sure you are buying a high-quality product that is sweat or water resistant. If your skin is sensitive, prefer a mineral sunscreen. There are several skincare and makeup products available with built-in sunscreen. You can consider those as well.