A good dose of exposure to the sun is good for the well being of the human body as the body will then be able to produce vitamin D which is basically vital in the prevention of illnesses such as osteoporosis, heart disease, cancer, stroke and believe it or not even depression. However, lesser and lesser people will opt to go out into the sun nowadays sighting the danger of the sun’s rays as an excuse. But what about tanning beds, are they able to provide the same health benefits that we are able to derive from the fun or rather more specifically can our bodies produce vitamin D by using the tanning booths. In reality the tanning beds are not able to replicate what nature has provided for us, while the saloons would love for you to have this form of perception, it is not advisable for you to go to these indoor tanning as a solution for your body to produce the vitamin D that it needs. The difference lies in the type of ultraviolet light rays and how they will affect your body.
UVA and UVB are the two types of ultraviolet light rays that are emitted from both the tanning booths and the sun. The skin is able to absorb both type of rays but it does it in different ways. The UVB rays’ have a shorter wavelength which means that it can only reach the surface layers of the skin, in comparison to this is the UVA ray where the wavelength is longer meaning that the ray can actually penetrate deep within the skin layer. These two types of rays will contribute to the health risk that is usually associated with too much exposure to the sun’s rays such as the development of skin cancer. What most people should focus on is getting enough exposure of the UVB rays as this type of ray will trigger the synthesis of vitamin D within the body. So this means that you can expose your face and arm to the sunshine for approximately 20 minutes per day to provide enough UVB rays to the skin so that it can create enough vitamin D for the body without causing the skin to become damaged.
Like stated previously what you should be looking out for is the UVB rays which will provide you with the health benefits that you need. This unfortunately is not what the tanning saloons are interested with, as the overexposure to the UVB rays will affect the surface layer of the skin which can cause sunburns. What the tanning saloons are more interested with is the golden brown tans that are sought out by the clients and this has resulted in the tanning beds being calibrated to emit 95% of the UVA rays. The machine is calibrated in such a way so that the risk of burning is reduced while the tanning effects are increased. So basically this means that you will not get the required amount of exposure to the UVB rays in order for you to produce the sufficient amount of vitamin D that the body requires.
The tanning bed can actually be calibrated in such a way that it will emit a greater percentage of UVB rays. Of course the key here is moderation as exposure to both of these types of ultraviolet rays can be quite dangerous if not regulated properly. How many of you have actually entered a tanning bed while wearing a T-shirt and pants, this is suffice to say that when you expose too much of your skin area to the ultraviolet rays it will result in the excessive absorption of the rays.
The best way to get the vitamin D that your body requires is to go natural this means that, just step out of your home and bask in the sunshine. Just try not to go overboard with your sunbathing as too much exposure to it will increase the chance of getting skin cancer. Take about 15-20 minutes per day, for several times a week and that is all that is required for your body to produce the level of vitamin D that it needs. However if you are unsure about the amount of vitamin D that your body requires you can get your vitamin D levels tested and consider supplementing it with a vitamin D3 intake. Tanning booths might give you that golden brown hue that you have always desired but it will also put you at unnecessary risk to the over exposure of the UVA rays, not to mention that your body will not be able to generate the level of vitamin D that it needs so do it the old fashion way.