Hi all and Happy Friday!
I loved hearing everyone’s comments and opinions on my post about how being underweight can be harmful to your health. If you would like to still comment, please do so! It’s such an important issue!
Now onto today’s topic:
I know most of us are concerned with how we eat and how much exercise we get each day, but taking care of our skin is just as important when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle.
We spend so much time focusing on how to make ourselves look better. It’s just like yesterday when I said people can take a healthy lifestyle too far by getting too thin, we can also take tanning too far. The sad truth about both situations is that it lessens our quality of life and can even be deadly.
I have the skin type that is able to get very tan (my Italian roots!) and in high school and college I would bask in the sun all of the time. I even would use tanning beds to get a “base” tan before vacations (which is completely foolish by the way AND it’s a myth that it helps in not getting burned or lessening skin damage). I have probably already done a lot of damage to my skin, which really sucks.
However, over the last year or so I’ve committed myself to taking better care of my skin. I’ve become proactive and have taken steps to help prevent skin cancer.
When I go on vacation I no longer bake in the sun. I pile on the SPF 50 (yes, 50!) and spend most of the time under the umbrella. I still think a nice tan looks great, but it’s not worth it to me at all. I am now embracing my paler skin tone.
I have also started seeing a dermatologist once a year to give my skin the ol’ once over to check for any irregularities.
Just to show you the difference in my skin tone, here are a few pictures…
Here is me at the age of 17 on vacation
Know the Warning Signs of Troubled Skin
From the Today Show: View HERE!
- Check you skin once a month- look for changes in skin
- Use sunscreen EVERY day and reapply often- every hour or two if out in the sun. Use SPF 30 or above
- Know what a normal mole looks like- a normal mole is not raised, jagged, and is usually symmetrical
- Even if you have darker skin, you STILL need to wear sunscreen
- Do not use tanning beds!! View a video about “tanning addiction” here
Skin Cancer Prevention: From the American Cancer Society
Skin cancer is the most common of all cancer types. More than 1 million skin cancers are diagnosed each year in the United States. That’s more than cancers of the prostate, breast, lung, colon, uterus, ovaries, and pancreas combined. The number of skin cancer cases has been going up over the past few decades.
The good news is that you can do a lot to protect yourself and your family from skin cancer, or to catch it early enough so that it can be treated effectively. Most skin cancers are caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays. Much of this exposure comes from the sun, but some may come from man-made sources, such as indoor tanning lamps.
Finding possible skin cancers doesn’t require any x-rays or blood tests — just your eyes and a mirror. If skin cancer does develop, finding it early is the best way to ensure it can be treated effectively.
To protect yourself on a daily basis (not just when at the beach!), make sure to cover up, use a sunscreen every day, where a hat and sunglasses, limit sun exposure during the middle of the day and always avoid tanning beds!
What do YOU do to protect your skin on a daily basis?
I try and wear a face sunscreen every day, I try not to be in the sun during the middle of the day for too long, I take walks in the early morning when the sun is not as strong, and I always cover up when spending the day outside and reapply SPF.