It may be cold but the shining sun will bring good news

As the saying goes, if March comes in like a lion it should go out like a lamb. However, after the winter extremes this year I am highly suspect of any weather being lamb-like in the near future. Not that I am complaining, even though that seems to be part of being Canadian, it’s just  I think we have had a fair bit of extreme ups and downs this year. I was so thrilled to have the massive dump of snow in January but the week of torrential downpour that followed was rather disheartening and took the fun out of many winter activities such as cross-country skiing or even walking, with ice hard surfaces everywhere. That is essentially the crux of this current winter, it seems to have been one of copious amounts of ice. I even debated putting skates on my son to go down the driveway to meet the bus on several occasions. However, there has also been a lot of sunshine this winter and the days are now getting longer with the return of the light!While I am sure most people are thrilled to see more sunlight in our lives and feel the warming rays upon our cheeks, it is also medicine for the body and soul.I recently came across a startling study that showed cancer levels in people near the equator were only two per cent. That was staggering information for myself. I have always known that eating right and living a healthy stress free life full of exercise was important but I did not realize the sun is such a big factor. Especially with the increase in skin cancer it would almost lead one to believe the opposite of the sun. Yet, studies from all over the world, are finding similar facts about the benefits of the sun. Researchers say that it is still true that the sun’s short UVB wavelengths can damage DNA and suppress the immune system. However, according to studies such as that released by the Harvard Health Letter, skin cancer risks are a combination of genes and skin types. They also stated that although sun exposure usually gets a bad rap, it can also do good things for your skin and body. “These wavelengths kick off chemical and metabolic chain reactions that produce vitamin D, which may promote bone health.”There is also strong research that suggests vitamin D helps prevent some cancers such as breast, colon and endometrial cancer. It also helps fight infection and can help to prevent immune-system diseases such as multiple sclerosis and more recently, evidence is showing it helps to prevent heart attacks.There is an excellent article about all they have learned and what research is saying on Canada.com called ‘Sun’s benefits make a comeback’ and it is a great read.So, long and short, while it may be bitterly cold still with -20 temperatures predicted for this week, the sun is shining! So perhaps keeping out of the cold could be a double benefit  if you spend a little time in front of a window letting your body feel the sun’s warmth and healing energy.

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