For safe, summer fun in the sun, you want to protect your skin. The best defenses against getting too much sun exposure are protective clothing, shade and timing. Unfortunately, work and play make avoiding sun exposure impossible for many people. The beachgoer and the gardener find that the best line of defense is sunscreen. Choosing the right sunscreen though, is just as important as remembering to apply it.
The Guide to Summer Sun, an online database created by the Environmental Working Group, helps consumers choose a sunscreen that provides protection from the summer sun without using harmful, chemical ingredients. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit organization that uses the power of public information to protect public health and the environment. According to the Environmental Working Group, the best sunscreens do not boast a high SPF rating, do not contain Vitamin A, and do not contain oxybenzone. High SPF ratings can tempt users to stay in the sun too long, suppressing sunburn, but not other kinds of skin damage. Eating foods rich in vitamin A are good for you, but new research has shown that spreading vitamin A on your skin may not be good for you. Topical vitamin A has been linked to an increased number of tumors and lesions. Oxybenzone is a synthetic estrogen that penetrates the skin and contaminates the body.
The Environmental Working Group recommends picking a sunscreen that has an SPF rating that is appropriate for your skin type and solar exposure. EWG recommends generous application of sunscreen and to at least use the American Cancer Society minimum SPF recommendation of 15. The Environmental Working Group also recommends using a mineral based sunscreen that contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are minerals that offer broad spectrum UV protection.
At The Mustard Seed Natural and Organic Food Store, we sell a variety of different mineral based, natural sunscreens. These include popular brands like Badger Balm, Aubrey Organics, Alba Organics, Kiss my Face and Burt’s Bees. The Mustard Seed is the North Country’s #1 Source for natural food and supplements. The Mustard Seed is located at 969 Arsenal Street in Watertown.
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This article is for educational purposes only. The products mentioned in this article are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Always consult with your doctor or pharmacist before taking any dietary supplements.