How much sun is safe?

As the northern hemisphere enters summer, a new study commissioned by the Met Office in conjunction with NHS England has highlighted concerns over a lack of knowledge around sun care by parents. There has been lot of education around the dangers of too much sun exposure over recent years, but still not a lot is known about the dangers of too little sun. Vitamin D, not just essential to our health and wellbeing, but vital for life, is made by our bodies when our skin is exposed to the sun. In short, because vitamin D is critical to maintain life, we have been designed to get it easily on exposing our skin to the sun. Sunlight is free and available daily throughout most of the world. However, lack of sunshine and the use of sunscreen have played havoc with our evolutionary internal vitamin D mechanism. Despite the incessant fear-inducing messaging around sun exposure, sunlight itself isn’t bad, burning is bad. Use sunscreen to prevent burning, but do it in such a way as to ensure that you get your full dose of vitamin D through your skin first. Vitamin D research is ongoing and what we thought back in 2004 is very different to what we’ve known since 2014. If you’re elderly, of fuller body or have a darker skin you need to be in the sun for around 3x longer than a young, fair skinned, lean person. Back in 2014, we published a feature article that gives more information on vitamin D, why it’s so important, how to stay safe in the sun and supplement when needed.

Holland & Barrett sold to highest bidder

Hot on the heels of Amazon’s acquisition of US-founded, Wholefoods Market, come news of the sale of UK health store chain, Holland & Barrett, to a Russian billionaire. Already the biggest high street health store chain in the UK, Holland & Barrett are rapidly becoming a player in the global market. They currently have 1,368 stores around the world through a programme of franchising and acquisition, including in Belgium, Sweden, China, the Netherlands and Republic of Ireland. The global health and wellness market grew 10.6% between 2013-2015 and is now a trillion dollar global marketplace. However, despite the growing consumer interest in health and wellbeing worldwide, levels of the major chronic diseases continue to increase.

Opposition to mandatory vaccination in Italy grows

The Veneto Region is among several in Italy who have expressed their opposition to the recent Government decree on mandatory vaccination. Lawyers are preparing a legal challenge. They have stated that they are not against vaccination, but they oppose mandatory vaccination and support informed decision by parents. Meanwhile protests have continued in Rome as more and more people and organisations come together to support the right to freedom of choice. Knowing the hot-blooded Italians, this isn’t going to be a slam dunk for the government or Big Pharma! People power is really the answer. Together, united, we can maintain our freedoms.

Glyphosate known to cause cancer

It's official! According to the state of California, glyphosate causes cancer. On the 28th March 2017 the Californian Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) announced glyphosate would be added to the list of chemicals known to cause cancer. Monsanto challenged the listing in Court, but was unsuccessful. They have appealed, but no date has yet been set for a further hearing. Glyphosate was, therefore, added to the Proposition 65 list on 7th July. This will likely see the infamous Californian bounty-hunter lawyers rubbing their hands in glee as they line up companies in the food sector in their sights as targets for claims.

Anti-fluoride pressure group to sue EPA to ban Fluoridation in US

The Fluoride Action Network (FAN) in the USA has filed a court complaint seeking a ban on water fluoridation in the US. This follows the rejection of a petition submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last year, calling for a ban on water fluoridation. A Cochrane review in 2015 provided clear evidence for an absence of proven benefit and likely risk of water fluoridation. Fluoride is primarily added to water with the intent of reducing tooth decay. However, whether there is in fact any benefit from this continues to be hotly debated in scientific circles given the very significant risks to human health from ingesting variable amounts of hydrofluorosilicic acid