Dietary Chlorophyll Helps Us Capture/Use Sunlight Energy, Groundbreaking Study Reveals

Dietary Chlorophyll Helps Us Capture/Use Sunlight Energy, Groundbreaking Study Reveals | sunlight | General Health Science & Technology

An amazing study published in the Journal of Cell Science reveals an entirely new reason why it is essential that you ‘eat your greens,’ as mother always said, namely: it enables your body’s mitochondria to produce more ATP energy when exposed to sunlight. 

The study titled, “Light-harvesting chlorophyll pigments enable mammalian mitochondria to capture photonic energy and produce ATP“, indicates that by eating a chlorophyll-rich diet mammals (and by implication humans) can capture specific wavelengths of sunlight radiation that will translate into increased energy within the powerhouses of the cell known as the mitochondria.

Dietary Chlorophyll Helps Us Capture/Use Sunlight Energy, Groundbreaking Study Reveals | cell-science-chlorophyll-453x300 | General Health Science & Technology

The researchers, working out of Columbia University Medical Center, conducted a number of experiments in order to ascertain whether animals as well as plants can use light-absorbing chlorophyll molecules to capture light energy for ATP synthesis.

While it has been prevailing wisdom that only plants can use sunlight directly for producing energy (photosynthesis), it can not be denied that not only do many animals consume chlorophyll through their diet but that research has been performed showing chlorophyll metabolites “retain the ability to absorb light in the visible spectrum at wavelengths that can penetrate into animal tissues.” (Ferruzzi and Blakeslee, 2007; Ma and Dolphin, 1999). Given these facts, the authors of the new study “sought to elucidate the consequences of light absorption by these potential dietary metabolites.” What they discovered was simply remarkable:

We show that dietary metabolites of chlorophyll can enter the circulation, are present in tissues, and can be enriched in the mitochondria. When incubated with a light-capturing metabolite of chlorophyll, isolated mammalian mitochondria and animal-derived tissues, have higher concentrations of ATP when exposed to light, compared with animal tissues not mixed with the metabolite. We demonstrate that the same metabolite increases ATP concentrations, and extends the median life span of Caenorhabditis elegans [worm], upon light exposure; supporting the hypothesis that photonic energy capture through dietary-derived metabolites may be an important means of energy regulation in animals. The presented data are consistent with the hypothesis that metabolites of dietary chlorophyll modulate mitochondrial ATP stores by catalyzing the reduction of coenzyme Q. These findings have implications for our understanding of aging, normal cell function and life on earth.

For detailed descriptions of their study methods and results, view the full pdf online here.


The implications of this study are truly profound. ATP production is essential for the health of our body, from the level of the cell all the way up. When ATP production is compromised through suboptimal nutrition, environmental exposures, or non-adaptive stress, disease and accelerated aging are inevitable. Even when these adverse variables are not a factor, ATP production will naturally fall off as we age, leaving a role for nutritional interventions that can help to increase ATP synthesis without, for instance, increasing oxidative stress or causing exhaustion or imbalances elsewhere. Clearly, a plant-based diet rich in chlorophyll will have certain advantages over one without this compound (and its metabolites). Also, chlorophyll and/or it’s metabolites may be an ideal nutritional and/or functional medical intervention for the growing number in the post-industrial world whose cellular machinery is already deeply compromised and functioning far below optimal levels.

Dietary Chlorophyll Helps Us Capture/Use Sunlight Energy, Groundbreaking Study Reveals | chlorophyll | General Health Science & Technology

If this cell and animal research holds true for humans, a chlorophyll-deficient diet, along with a deficiency of sunlight exposure, would lead to significantly lower ATP production. Given this possibility, wouldn’t it be amazing to begin looking at the green wavelengths of color in the produce case as a source of energy for the powerhouses of the cell (mitochondria), as potential age-decelerating agents, or as a means to increase one’s sense of energy and health by allowing you to capture the sun’s energies directly within your body? I believe this is exactly what this research indicates and makes it all the more compelling to got out of your way to include deep green veggies and living, chlorophyll-rich foods in your diet on a daily basis, does it not?

Is A Radically New Understanding of Cell Bioenergetics On the Horizon?

It’s really not that hard to believe that the human body can capture and utilize sunlight when you consider the extensive body of research that already proves we emit low levels of light (below the threshold of visibility) known as biophotons. And this study is actually only the tip of the iceberg! Two new studies just published and well worth reading, argue that our bodies evolved the capability to capture the energy of the Sun directly through melanin, as well as other components within our cells, in a process known as “extrasynthesis of ATP.”

The first study, titled, “Did human hairlessness allow natural photobiomodulation 2 million years ago and enable photobiomodulationtherapy today? This can explain the rapid expansion of our genus’s brain“, argues that human hairlessness evolved approximately 2 million years ago because it made possible the conversion of sunlight wavelengths into chemical energy within our cells. By making possible the exposure of our skin to a consistent and significant source of ultraviolet radiation, the genetic mutation leading to hairlessness was positively selected for, leading to a number of downstream effects, including the accelerated growth of the energy-hungry neocortex portion of our brains.  Here is the extraordinary abstract:

Present hypotheses to explain human hairlessness appear to be inadequate because hairlessness is not accompanied by any immediate benefit. A new, testable, hypothesis is advanced to explain our hairlessness based on photobiomodulation research, also known as low-level light therapy. This shows that red and near infrared radiation has a very beneficial effect on superficial tissues, including the brain. Random mutation/s resulting in complete hairlessness allowed early humans to receive daily doses of red and near infrared radiation at sunset. Photobiomodulation research shows this has a twofold effect: it results in increased mitochondrial respiratory chain activity with consequent ATP ‘extrasynthesis’ in all superficial tissues, including the brain. It also advantageously affects the expression of over 100 genes through the activation of transcription factor NFkB which results in cerebral metabolic and haemodynamic enhancement. It is also possible that melanin can supply electrons to the respiratory chain resulting in ATP extrasynthesis. These effects would start automatically as soon as hairlessness occurred resulting in a selective sweep of the mutation/s involved. This was followed by the very rapid brain evolution of the last 2my which, it is suggested, was due to intelligence-led evolution based initially on the increased energy and adeptness of the newly hairless individuals.

The second study, even more extraordinary in its hypothesis and implications, and titledBeyond Mitochondria, What would be the Energy Source of the Cell?“, argues that melanin (the archetypal pigment molecule) is capable of providing up to 90% of the cell’s energy needs through capturing and converting sunlight into chemical energy (specifically, disassociating and reforming H20). If proven true, this view would profoundly decenter the glucose-centric view of cellular energetic which presently dominates cell biology, with many deep-reaching implications to the field of nutrition and medicine. Here is the amazing abstract:

Currently, cell biology is based on glucose as the main source of energy. Cellular bioenergetic pathways have become unnecessarily complex in their eagerness to explain that how the cell is able to generate and use energy from the oxidation of glucose, where mitochondria play an important role through oxidative phosphorylation. During a descriptive study about the three leading causes of blindness in the world, the ability of melanin to transform light energy into chemical energy through the dissociation of water molecule was unraveled. Initially, during 2 or 3 years; we tried to link together our findings with the widely accepted metabolic pathways already described in metabolic pathway databases, which have been developed to collect and organize the current knowledge on metabolism scattered across a multitude of scientific articles. However, firstly, the literature on metabolism is extensive but rarely conclusive evidence is available, and secondly, one would expect these databases to contain largely the same information, but the contrary is true. For the apparently well studied metabolic process Krebs cycle, which was described as early as 1937 and is found in nearly every biology and chemistry curriculum, there is a considerable disagreement between at least five databases. Of the nearly 7000 reactions contained jointly by these five databases, only 199 are described in the same way in all the five databases. Thus to try to integrate chemical energy from melanin with the supposedly well-known bioenergetic pathways is easier said than done; and the lack of consensus about metabolic network constitutes an insurmountable barrier. After years of unsuccessful results, we finally realized that the chemical energy released through the dissociation of water molecule by melanin represents over 90% of cell energy requirements. These findings reveal a new aspect of cell biology, as glucose and ATP have biological functions related mainly to biomass and not so much with energy. Our finding about the unexpected intrinsic property of melanin to transform photon energy into chemical energy through the dissociation of water molecule, a role performed supposedly only by chlorophyll in plants, seriously questions the sacrosanct role of glucose and thereby mitochondria as the primary source of energy and power for the cells.

For those with a serious interest, please contact me at for access to the full studies and potential inclusion in a discussion group related to these topics.

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Research From 100+ Countries Proves Sunlight Prevents Cancer

Research From 100+ Countries Proves Sunlight Prevents Cancer | sunshine | Natural Medicine Sleuth Journal Special Interests

For the same reason that the conventional energy industry has not harnessed the full potential of solar energy (its free!), sunlight and its indispensable byproduct in our skin: vitamin D, represents a serious threat to the medical establishment, whose questionable and aggressive promotion of vaccination and drug-based strategies in place of inexpensive, safe and effective vitamin D supplementation (or better, carefully meted out recreation and sunlight exposure) for immunity, has many questioning their motives.

Vitamin D, after all, has a vital preventive role to play in hundreds of conditions, due to the fact that 1 in every 10 genes in the human body depends on adequate quantities of this gene-regulatory hormone to function optimally.  In other words, the very genetic/epigenetic infrastructure of our health would fall apart without adequate levels.

Even the risk for developing cancer, one of the most feared health conditions of our time — and the one the medical establishment has had the least success preventing and treating — is intimately connected to your vitamin D status.

Indeed, a groundbreaking new meta-analysis on the sunlight – vitamin D connection, published in the journal Anticancer Research and based on data from over 100 countries, found that “a strong inverse correlations with solar UVB for 15 types of cancer,” with weaker, though still significant evidence for the protective role of sunlight in 9 other cancers.

The relevant cancers were

“Bladder, breast, cervical, colon, endometrial, esophageal, gastric, lung, ovarian, pancreatic, rectal, renal, and vulvar cancer; and Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Weaker evidence exists for nine other types of cancer: brain, gallbladder, laryngeal, oral/pharyngeal, prostate, and thyroid cancer; leukemia; melanoma; and multiple myeloma.”

Sunlight exposure, after all, is essential for health from the moment we are born. Without it, for instance, infants are prone to developing neonatal jaundice.  The very variation in human skin color from African, melanin-saturated dark skin, to the relatively melanin de-pigmented, Caucasian lighter-skin, is a byproduct of the offspring of our last common ancestor from Africa (as determined by mitochondrial DNA) migrating towards sunlight-impoverished higher latitudes, which began approximately 60,000 years ago.

In order to compensate for the lower availability of sunlight, the body rapidly adjusted, essentially requiring the removal of the natural “sunscreen” melanin from the skin, which interferes with vitamin D production.  While a life-saving adaptation, the loss of melanin likely has adverse health effects, which include losing the ability to convert sunlight into metabolic energy, increased prevalence of Parkinson’s disease (which involves de-melanization of the substantia nigra), and others effects which we will discuss in detail in a future article.

For now, it is important to point out that within the span of only 60,000 years (a nanosecond in biological time), many of the skin “color” differences among the world’s human inhabitants reflect how heavily genetically-conserved was the ability of the human body to produce vitamin D.

It should also be pointed out that vitamin D is to sunlight, what ascorbic acid is to the vitamin C activity in food. In other words, sunlight likely provides a greater spectrum of therapeutic activity (when carefully meted out, preferably during solar noon) than supplemental vitamin D3, which is almost exclusively derived from UVB irradiated sheep’s lanolin.

For further research, the following link reveals 50 therapeutic effects of sunlight exposure, as culled from research housed on the National Library of Medicine.

© April 23, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here

Article Contributed by Sayer Ji, Founder of

Sayer Ji is an author, researcher, lecturer, and advisory board member of the National Health Federation. He founded in 2008 in order to provide the world an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. It is internationally recognized as the largest and most widely referenced health resource of its kind.


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Sunlight Holds Key To Killing Breast Cancer

Sunlight Holds Key To Killing Breast Cancer | sunlight | Natural Medicine

A new study finds vitamin D — the ‘sunlight vitamin’ — strikes to the very heart of breast cancer malignancy.

Breast cancer is not what most people think. Beneath the intimidating statistics that make it seem like a juggernaut of inevitability or a time bomb of genetic determinism ready to go off in the asymptomatic breasts of millions of women, a far more complex conversation is occurring among clinicians and researchers concerning the true nature and causes of cancer, and why conventional therapies fail to turn the tide against the second highest cause of death in the Western world.  To fully appreciate this, one must go to the first hand research itself.

For instance, a new study published in The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology identifies an overlooked root cause of breast cancer (cancer stem cells), as well as a natural intervention that has yet to be incorporated into the conventional standard of cancer care.

Titled, “Vitamin D compounds reduce mammosphere formation and decrease expression of putative stem cell markers in breast cancer,” the new study brings to the forefront the role of breast cancer stem cells (BSCs) in breast tumor formation and their progression towards malignancy and treatment resistance. For many decades it was assumed that cancer results from DNA-damaged cells succumbing to fundamentally chaotic processes, ‘going rogue’ and reproducing clonally (making identical copies of one another), without an acknowledgment of the different types of cells that comprise tumors. The most salient difference is between the cancer stem cells (sometimes referred to as ‘mother’ cells) which are capable of theoretically infinite self-renewal and produce all the differentiated ‘daughter’ cells in a tumor colony, which themselves are not capable of living indefinitely. It is actually the existence of the much smaller number of cancer stem cells which causes cancer recurrence, as they are not only resistant to conventional chemotherapy and radiation, but their numbers can actually be increased (enriched) by these two ‘therapies.’ Therefore, any cancer therapy that ignores the cancer stem cell subpopulation in favor of killing the non-tumorigenic daughter cells in order to ‘debulk’ the tumor (i.e. shrink it), will not result in destroying the root of the cancer. To the contrary, it can generate the illusion of ‘remission’ while in fact making the remaining tumor colony far more malignant, setting up the conditions for aggressive recurrence years later.

The new study focused on a type of breast tissue abnormality known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which for decades was considered cancer (constituting about 20% of all breast cancer diagnoses), but recently has been identified as a benign lesion of epithelial origin. There are cases where DCIS progresses towards another breast abnormality known as invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC), which is considered a more serious risk. But even IDC cases may never progress to cause symptoms, nor ever cause harm to those within which it occurs. Nonetheless, the conventional medical system still considers a diagnosis of either DCIS or IDC justification for aggressive interventions, e.g. lumpectomy, mastectomy, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, indicating that if there is a natural intervention to decelerate the trajectory from DCIS to IDC, especially if it focuses on targeting and/or reducing the expression and growth of breast cancer stem cells, it is of great clinical relevance.

The new study sought to determine whether vitamin D3 and an analog known as BXL0124 are capable of inhibiting the progression of DCIS to IDC, and whether this effect is mediated through an influence on breast cancer stem cells (BCSCs). The study used a mammosphere cell culture system, which is a clump of mammary gland cells that includes breast cancer stem cells along with non-stem cell breast cells.

The researchers found that when the Vitamin D compounds were administered to the mammosphere culture it was observed to undergo a transition from a state of disorganization and irregularity in shape to a more organized and symmetrical shape similar to spheres formed by a non-malignant, normal mammary epithelial cell line. This cancer-defying effect of the vitamin D compounds was described in terms of a reduction in the so-called ‘mammosphere forming efficiency (MFE).” Moreover, treatment with vitamin D compounds was found to repress cell markers associated with stem cell-like phenotype (e.g. CD44, CD49f,c-Notch1, andpNFkB), as well as pluripotency markers (e.g. OCT4 and KLF-4), another property found within cancer stem cells.

The study concluded:

“Cancer progression, metastasis, and recurrence are significant problems in managing breast cancer. A significant body of evidence indicates that breast cancer stem cells drive these processes, complicating treatment strategies. A better understanding of how BCSCs drive breast cancer progression will aid in developing targeted therapies toward BCSCs. Our present study suggests a potential treatment strategy to reduce the putative BCSC population, and therefore enhance the effectiveness of breast cancer prevention and treatment through the use of vitamin D compounds.” [emphasis added]

Regardless of whether DCIS or ICS really do represent a mortal threat to the health and lives of women, this study indicates that vitamin D targets the most malignant cell type found within breast cancer — the cancer stem cells — which is infinitely more selective an intervention than radiation and chemotherapy; nor does vitamin D have the profoundly damaging side effects of conventional cancer treatment.

Vitamin D, of course, is designed to be manufactured through the ultraviolet B-stimulated conversion of the cholesterol metabolite 7-dehydrocholesterol in the skin. The fact that in the modern era the breasts are never exposed to sunlight and that generally speaking adequate sunlight exposure (especially considering the over-use of vitamin-D blocking and carcinogenic petroleum-based sunscreens) is rare, it is likely that many of the variations in breast morphology increasingly being diagnosed through technologies like mammography as being ‘abnormal’ or ‘precancerous,’ directly reflect a deficiency of sunlight and Vitamin D.  While the U.S. Preventive Task Force does not believe there is enough evidence supporting the benefit of vitamin D screening in routine practice, there is no harm in getting a blood test to determine one’s levels relative to the background population. And since vitamin D3 supplementation is affordable and extremely safe relative to commonly prescribed pharmaceuticals like Tamoxifen (a known carcinogen), it may provide those at risk for breast cancer or breast cancer recurrence with a reasonable alternative to watchful waiting and/or preventive chemotherapy.

For additional research on risk factors for breast cancer stem cell enrichment, as well as natural substances found to kill them, take a look at our database page on the topic: Breast Cancer Stem Cells, as well as the larger database section on Cancer Stem Cells in general.

© March 20, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here


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Sunlight May Reduce Risk of Nearsightedness

Sunlight May Reduce Risk of Nearsightedness | sunglasses-beach | General Health Science & Technology Sleuth Journal Special Interests

Sunlight is good for you. Seriously good for you. In fact, a new study shows that people, teens in particular, who spend time outside basking in the sun have better vision later in life.

Conversely, those who don’t get a lot of sun when they’re in their teens or early 20s can expect the opposite. The types of vision problems the study1 showed improvement on included myopia, a type of nearsightedness.

Researchers from King’s College London, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and other universities reviewed 371 Europeans with nearsightedness, as well as 2,797 people without the condition, all 65 and older.

Each participant underwent an eye examination, had blood samples taken and had an interview about their health behaviors in previous years, primarily to estimate their exposure to ultraviolet B rays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., and between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Those with the most ultraviolet B exposure, especially when they were teenagers and young adults between 14 and 29 years old, had a 30 percent lower risk of myopia, the inability to see clearly at a distance, than those who had the lowest exposures. However, the link wasn’t meant to prove cause and effect — just an association.

The researchers wrote that myopia is becoming more and more common and is increasingly associated with complications that could ultimately threaten peoples’ eyesight, or introduce complications. They added that while exposing oneself to sunlight is actually protective, most people have no idea.

Myopia is considered a genetic problem only a mere fraction of the time, but the study authors say that while the environment appears to have something to do with it, it’s not yet clear what that is.

The Problem With Kids Today

It’s notable that 80 percent to 90 percent of youth in East Asia have problems with myopia nowadays, while in Europe as well as the U.S.,2 it’s more like 40 percent to 50 percent. Research suggests that it’s more common among people who have higher education and less common with people who regularly spend time outdoors.

“Increasing the amount of time outdoors in schools in Taiwan over the past five years has led to decreases in the prevalence of myopia for the first time in 40 years,” said Ian Morgan, Ph.D., a vision researcher and visiting fellow at Australian National University, who was not involved in the study.

A survey done in the United Kingdom (which may be a good representation of youth throughout the world) revealed not only that a fifth of the population that could be called “kids” spend zero percent of their time outdoors but, worse, that 75 percent spend less time outdoors than — get this — prison inmates. noted:

“The paper’s findings underline the importance of having outdoor activities especially now as humanity enjoys the so-called information technology boom, with most eyes glued to smartphones, tablet computers, laptops and so on.

It is quite obvious that this generation has a problem. Teens and young adults nowadays spend more time indoors as they are greatly engaged with their computers and other similar devices.”3 reported the reason for this phenomenon is because, according to 80 percent of the kids, “it was uncomfortable to be outdoors due to things like bugs and heat.” Sixty percent said they had no transportation so they could travel to natural areas.

Visible Light

Factors such as climate, terrain and geographical coordinates were scrutinized in the study as well, as some climates tend to be rainy or foggy. Some areas of the world have used innovative ways to deal with mountains blocking sunlight availability.

One of the studies covered by the review concluded that there was a 2 percent decrease in the odds of ending up with myopia for every additional hour spent outdoors per week.4

According to U.S. News & World Report, scientists involved in the study say they aren’t sure that the present myopathy prevalence means that it’s sun exposure that has this positive effect on vision. It might actually be “visible light.” Dr. Donald Mutti, a professor at the Ohio State University College of Optometry, explained:

“UVB here seems to be a proxy for simply spending more time outside. The current thinking is that the brighter light outside stimulates a release of dopamine from the retina and that dopamine slows down the growth of the eye, preventing myopia.

Our group’s work has shown that being outside only affects myopia before it occurs. Once a child needs glasses, being outside has no effect on myopia.”5

Mutti said he believes kids should spend more time outside, but that they should also wear sunglasses and sunscreen; however, these things have the potential to cause other more serious problems.

To Wear Sunglasses or Not

As a matter of fact, “protecting” your eyes from sunlight can actually do more harm than good, because certain wavelengths from light nourish your eyes.

Shielding them too often prevents you from absorbing sunlight that’s meant to allow full-spectrum light into your eyes, not just to be able to see but to kick in your brain’s hypothalamus gland.

Your hypothalamus could be considered your master control for everything from your blood pressure to body temperature. It’s in charge of balancing your body clock and circadian rhythm, and natural sunlight is essential to this process. Without it, your body has trouble functioning properly.

Think of it like this: Light deprivation to your eyes, aka mal-illumination, could be compared to malnutrition to your body. Not just your bare skin requires 20 minutes of sun exposure every day, your eyes need sunlight, too. Mark’s Daily Apple notes the results of one experiment:

“Researchers trying to study the link between light exposure and myopia exposed chicks to various amounts of light. Normal laboratory lighting was 500 lux, ‘intense’ laboratory lighting was 15,000 lux, and sunlight was 30,000 lux.

Only intense lab light and sunlight were able to retard the development of myopia, while normal lab lighting — which is still quite bright and very similar to standard office lighting conditions — did not adequately protect.”

Note that direct sunlight is ridiculously bright (up to 130,000 lux), while just being outside in ‘full daylight’ will provide plenty of light for your retinal dopamine labs …

Just be outdoors and the sun will take care of the rest. If you can see stuff, that means light is getting to your eyes; it’s from the sun (and thus bright enough) and you’re good to go.”6

Myopia in Relation to Other Eye Diseases

Nearsightedness is measured in diopters (D), the same way eyeglasses and contacts are measured. Corrections are preceded by a minus sign (-) and measured in 0.25 D increments. Myopia of -0.25 or -3.00 is considered mild, moderate can be 3.25 to -6.00 and anything higher is characterized as high.

Both medium and high myopia can be associated with “serious, vision-threatening side effects, it’s termed “degenerative” or “pathological.”

More people have this condition today than they did just 30 years ago, and the prevalence is growing both steadily and alarmingly. In fact, in the early 1970s, around 25 percent of people living in the U.S. were affected. Thirty years later, it’s jumped to 42 percent.7

For whatever reason, nearsightedness seems to play a role in the prevalence of other eye diseases, some of them quite serious, such as:

Cataracts — Another study showed that cataracts, characterized as the lens of the eye becoming progressively opaque and resulting in blurred vision, tend to develop more quickly in people who have high myopathy, especially Koreans. Additionally, cataract surgery outcomes are not as successful.

Glaucoma — A condition that causes damage to the optic nerve, glaucoma is often linked to pressure building up inside the eye. Even mild cases of myopia are associated with greater incidence of this eye disease.

An Australian study reported that nearsighted individuals are two to three times more likely to suff from glaucoma than those without myopia.

Retinal detachment — American Journal of Epidemiology reported on a study in which scientists concluded that myopia was a “clear risk factor for retinal detachment.” All About Vision noted:

“Eyes with mild myopia had a four-fold increased risk of retinal detachment compared with non-myopic eyes. Among eyes with moderate and high myopia, the risk increased 10-fold.”

The study also noted that about 55 percent of retinal detachment cases not caused by trauma can be attributed to myopia.8 Further, people with an elongated eye shape (axial myopia) have a 1.72 percent greater risk of this condition after cataract surgery, as opposed to .28 percent among people with a rounder eye shape.

Does the Food You Eat Have Anything to Do With Eye Health?

While experiencing moderate amounts of skin exposure to sunlight also increases your vitamin D levels, the authors of the study said it has no connection to nearsightedness. The researchers also noted:

“The recommendation for children to spend time outdoors provides an attractive option, and intervention studies are in progress. However, it remains unclear which of the numerous elements associated with time spent outdoors, such as light intensity, ultraviolet radiation (UVR) or distant focus, confers the reduced risk of myopia.”

Not just the amount of sunlight your eyes are exposed to, but also the foods you eat can affect your eyesight, now and later in life. Harvard Health lists9 a number of nutrients your body needs to optimize your eyesight and several foods that provide them:

  • Lutein and zeaxanthin can be found in several brassica foods, such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, kale, Romaine lettuce, spinach, squash and eggs.
  • Animal-based omega-3 fatty acids are found in the greatest concentrations in wild-caught Alaskan salmon, sardines and krill, and the plant-based variety in flaxseeds and flaxseed oil and walnuts.
  • Vitamin A is found in good amounts in apricots and cantaloupe
  • Vitamin C is present in grapefruit, kiwi, oranges, red peppers and strawberries
  • Vitamin E can be found in almonds, broccoli, spinach and sunflower seeds


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5 Amazing Properties of Sunlight You’ve Never Heard About

5 Amazing Properties of Sunlight You've Never Heard About | heart-sunset-sunlight | General Health Science & Technology Sleuth Journal Special Interests

Sunlight is well-known to provide us vitamin D, but did you know that it kills pain, keeps us alert at night, burns fat and more…

Our biological connection and dependence to the sun is so profound, that the very variation in human skin color from African, melanin-saturated dark skin, to the relatively melanin de-pigmented, Caucasian lighter-skin, is a byproduct of the offspring of our last common ancestor from Africa (as determined by mitochondrial DNA) migrating towards sunlight-impoverished higher latitudes, which began approximately 60,000 years ago. In order to compensate for the lower availability of sunlight, the body rapidly adjusted, essentially requiring the removal of the natural “sunscreen” melanin from the skin, which interferes with vitamin D production; vitamin D, of course, is involved in the regulation of over 2,000 genes, and therefore is more like a hormone, without which our entire genetic infrastructure becomes destabilized.

While the health benefits of vitamin D are well-documented ( has identified over 200 health conditions that may benefit from optimizing vitamin D levels: Vitamin D Health Benefits page, and Henry Lahore’s Vitamin D Wiki has far more), the therapeutic properties of sunlight are only now being explored in greater depth by the research community.

Below are detailed five noteworthy properties of sunlight exposure:

1) Sunlight Has Pain-Killing (Analgesic) Properties: A 2005 study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine titled, “The effect of sunlight on postoperative analgesic medication use: a prospective study of patients undergoing spinal surgery,” analyzed patients staying on the bright side of the hospital unit who were exposed to 46% higher-intensity sunlight on average. The patients exposed to an increased intensity of sunlight experienced less perceived stress, marginally less, took 22% less analgesic medication per hour, and had 21% less pain medication costs. [i]

2) Sunlight Burns Fat: A 2011 study published in The Journal of Investigative Dermatology revealed a remarkable fact of metabolism: The exposure of human skin to UV light results in increased subcutaneous fat metabolism. While subcutaneous fat, unlike visceral fat, is not considered a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, it is known that a deficiency of one of sunlight’s best known beneficial byproducts, vitamin D, is associated with greater visceral fat.[ii] Also, there is a solid body of research showing that vitamin D deficiency is linked to obesity, with 9 such studies on our obesity research page.

One of them, titled “Association of plasma vitamin D levels with adiposity in Hispanic and African Americans,” and which was published in the journal Anticancer Research in 2005, found that vitamin D levels were inversely associated with adiposity in Hispanics and African-Americans, including abdominal obesity.[iii] The point? Exposure to UVB radiation, which is most abundant two hours on either side of solar noon and responsible for producing vitamin D, may be an essential strategy in burning fat, the natural way.

3) Sunlight via Solar Cycles May Directly Regulate Human Lifespan: Published in 2010 in the journal Medical Hypotheses and titled, “The effect of solar cycles on human lifespan in the 50 United states: variation in light affects the human genome,” researchers review the possibility that solar cycles directly affect the human genome.  According to the researchers:

In the current study we report that those persons conceived and likely born during the peaks (MAX approximately 3 years) of approximately 11-year solar cycles lived an average 1.7 years less than those conceived and likely born during non-peaks (MIN approximately 8 years). Increased energy at solar MAX, albeit relatively a small 0.1% increase from MIN, apparently modifies the human genome/epigenome and engenders changes that predispose to various diseases, thereby shortening lifespan. It is likely that same energy increases beneficial variety in the genome which may enhance adaptability in a changing environment.

Sunlight exposure, therefore, may directly affect the length of our life, and may even accelerate genetic changes that may confer a survival advantage.[iv]

4) Daytime Sunlight Exposure Improves Evening Alertness: A 2012 study published in the journal Behavioral Neuroscience titled, “Effects of prior light exposure on early evening performance, subjective sleepiness, and hormonal secretion,” found that subjects felt significantly more alert at the beginning of the evening after being exposed to 6 hours of mainly daylight exposure, whereas they became sleepier at the end of the evening after artificial light exposure.[v]

5) Sunlight May Convert To Metabolic Energy:

If a novel hypothesis published in 2008 in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine is correct,[vi] a longstanding assumption that animals are incapable of utilizing light energy directly is now called into question.  In other words, our skin may contain the equivalent of melanin “solar-panels,” and it may be possible to “ingest” energy, as plants do, directly from the Sun.

Melanin has a diverse set of roles in various organisms. From the ink of the octopus, to the melanin-based protective colorings of bacteria and fungi, melanin offers protection against a variety of threats: from predators and similar biochemical threats (host defenses against invading organisms), UV light, and other chemical stresses (i.e. heavy metals and oxidizing agents). Commonly overlooked, however, is melanin’s ability to convert gamma and ultraviolet radiation into metabolic energy within living systems.

Single-celled fungi, for instance, have been observed thriving within the collapsed nuclear reactor at Chernobyl, Ukraine, using gamma radiation as a source of energy. Albino fungi, without melanin, were studied to be incapable of using gamma radiation in this way, proving that gamma rays initiate a yet-unknown process of energy production within exposed melanin.

Vertebrate animals may also convert light directly into metabolic energy through the help of melanin. In a review  titled, “Melanin directly converts light for vertebrate metabolic use: heuristic thoughts on birds, Icarus and dark human skin,” Geoffrey Goodman and Dani Bercovich offer a thought-provoking reflection on the topic, the abstract of which is well worth reading in its entirety:

Pigments serve many visually obvious animal functions (e.g. hair, skin, eyes, feathers, scales). One is ‘melanin’, unusual in an absorption across the UV-visual spectrum which is controversial. Any polymer or macro-structure of melanin monomers is ‘melanin’. Its roles derive from complex structural and physical-chemical properties e.g. semiconductor, stable radical, conductor, free radical scavenger, charge-transfer.

Clinicians and researchers are well acquainted with melanin in skin and ocular pathologies and now increasingly are with internal, melanized, pathology-associated sites not obviously subject to light radiation (e.g. brain, cochlea). At both types of sites some findings puzzle: positive and negative neuromelanin effects in Parkinsons; unexpected melanocyte action in the cochlea, in deafness; melanin reduces DNA damage, but can promote melanoma; in melanotic cells, mitochondrial number was 83% less, respiration down 30%, but development similar to normal amelanotic cells.

A little known, avian anatomical conundrum may help resolve melanin paradoxes. One of many unique adaptations to flight, the pecten, strange intra-ocular organ with unresolved function(s), is much enlarged and heavily melanized in birds fighting gravity, hypoxia, thirst and hunger during long-distance, frequently sub-zero, non-stop migration. The pecten may help cope with energy and nutrient needs under extreme conditions, by a marginal but critical, melanin-initiated conversion of light to metabolic energy, coupled to local metabolite recycling.

Similarly in Central Africa, reduction in body hair and melanin increase may also have lead to ‘photomelanometabolism’ which, though small scale/ unit body area, in total may have enabled a sharply increased development of the energy-hungry cortex and enhanced human survival generally. Animal inability to utilize light energy directly has been traditionally assumed. Melanin and the pecten may have unexpected lessons also for human physiology and medicine.


  • [ii] Association Between Visceral Obesity and Sarcopenia and Vitamin D Deficiency in Older Koreans: The Ansan Geriatric Study. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2012 Feb 8. Epub 2012 Feb 8. PMID: 22316299
  • [iii] Association of plasma vitamin D levels with adiposity in Hispanic and African Americans. Anticancer Res. 2005 Mar-Apr;25(2A):971-9. PMID: 19549738
  • [iv] Walter E Lowell, George E Davis. The effect of solar cycles on human lifespan in the 50 United states: variation in light affects the human genome. Med Hypotheses. 2010 Jul;75(1):17-25. Epub 2010 May 7. PMID: 20452128
  • [v] Mirjam Münch, Friedrich Linhart, Apiparn Borisuit, Susanne M Jaeggi, Jean-Louis Scartezzini. Effects of prior light exposure on early evening performance, subjective sleepiness, and hormonal secretion. Behav Neurosci. 2012 Feb ;126(1):196-203. Epub 2011 Dec 26. PMID: 22201280
  • [vi] Geoffrey Goodman, Dani Bercovich. Melanin directly converts light for vertebrate metabolic use: heuristic thoughts on birds, Icarus and dark human skin. J Altern Complement Med. 2008 Jan-Feb;14(1):17-25. PMID: 18479839

© December 8, 2016 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here

The post 5 Amazing Properties of Sunlight You’ve Never Heard About appeared first on The Sleuth Journal.

Source: Alternative news journal

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Sunscreen Won’t Prevent Skin Cancer But Some Could Actually Cause It


Does wearing sunscreen prevent skin cancer? If you listen to public health officials that urge every man, woman and child to slather on sunscreen every day, you would think the answer is an unequivocal yes.

Aside from those who use sunscreen for the purpose of preventing wrinkles, it’s a safe assumption that many people use it with the intent of preventing skin cancer. But here’s the rub: wearing sunscreen may not actually protect you from cancer and, in some cases, may actually increase your risk.

Daily Sunscreen Use Versus Occasional Use: No Difference in Skin Cancer Rates

A Cochrane Review attempted to determine whether the use of topical sunscreen and physical sun-protective methods (such as wearing protective clothing, hats, and seeking shade) prevented the development of basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) compared to taking no precautionary measures.1

There wasn’t much data on the topic to be found, so the review includes the results of just one study, which compared the daily application of sunscreen with the occasional use of sunscreen over a period of 4.5 years.

Among the more than 1,600 Australian participants, there was no difference between the numbers of people who developed BCC or cSCC (the most common types of skin cancer) in the two groups during the trial period.

As noted in the Cochrane Review, “So, there did not seem to be a difference in applying sunscreen daily compared with using it occasionally.”2

While I certainly don’t recommend spending so much time in the sun that your skin gets burned, the one-size-fits-all recommendation from public health officials to apply sunscreen daily may be causing more harm than good.

The fact is, sunlight offers many benefits to your health, the majority of which are only beginning to be understood. Meanwhile, most sunscreens contain harmful chemicals and may not protect your skin from overexposure the way you think they do. Some may even increase your risk of cancer.

Certain Sunscreens May Speed the Development of Skin Cancer

Close to 16 percent of U.S. sunscreens contain vitamin A, which sounds like a natural addition that might be beneficial for your skin, acting as an antioxidant.

However, retinyl palmitate, a form of vitamin A, has been found to promote the development of skin tumors and lesions when applied topically and exposed to sunlight.3

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) National Center for Toxicological Research (NTP) has been studying the ability of vitamin A ingredients to trigger skin cancer when exposed to the sun for more than a decade.

One study on hairless mice revealed that the development of skin tumors was accelerated when a vitamin-A-laced cream was applied to the mice and then exposed to ultraviolet light daily for one year.4

Despite the known risks, these ingredients are still found in sunscreens with no warnings to consumers. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) reported:5

“Six years after EWG sounded the alarm about retinyl palmitate, the FDA still hasn’t completed follow-up studies that will allow the agency to take a position on the safety of vitamin A and related chemicals in cosmetics and sunscreens.

Most cosmetics companies have not removed these ingredients from sunscreens and other skin and lip products … EWG calls for sunscreen makers to voluntarily stop adding this ingredient to sunscreens until there is proof that it can be safely used on sun-exposed skin. …

EWG recommends that consumers avoid sunscreens and other skin and lip products containing vitamin A, retinyl palmitate, retinol, retinyl acetate, retinyl linoleate and retinoic acid.”

The SPF Myth: Is Higher SPF Really Better?

Dermatologists at Northwestern University in Chicago conducted a survey to assess people’s understanding of sunscreen labels.6 Many people consider SPF (sun protection factor) as a leading factor in their decision of which sunscreen to buy, despite the fact that, in the study, fewer than half knew what SPF meant.

Meanwhile, most of the people surveyed believed that SPF 30 offered double the sun protection of SPF 15. It’s an understandable assumption, but one that’s blatantly false. In fact, the difference between the two is much smaller — about 4 percent.

While an SPF 15 sunscreen should filter out about 93 percent of UVB (ultraviolet B) rays, SPF 30 filters out about 97 percent. Higher SPFs offer only minute benefits beyond this, with SPF 50 blocking 98 percent, and SPF 100 blocking 99 percent, of UVB rays.7

While SPF works by absorbing, reflecting or scattering the sun’s rays on your skin, its protective ability is not linear and does not offer a great deal more protection at higher levels.

SPF Refers Only to Protection Against UVB Rays, Not UVA

In regard to SPF, another important factor to remember is that an SPF rating refers only to protection against UVB rays, which are the rays within the ultraviolet spectrum that allows your body to produce vitamin D in your skin.

But the most dangerous rays, in terms of causing skin damage and cancer are UVA rays. According to EWG:8

“A sunscreen lotion’s SPF rating has little to do with the product’s ability to shield the skin from UVA rays. As a result of the FDA’s restrictions on ingredients and concentrations, U.S. sunscreens offer far less protection against UVA than UVB, particularly those products with the highest SPF.

Because UVA and UVB protection do not harmonize, high-SPF products suppress sunburn much more effectively than other types of sun damage.”

Not to mention, studies show that high-SPF products may not offer the SPF they claim. One study found that even small differences in testing conditions of an SPF 100 sunscreen yielded results between SPF 37 and 75.9

The amount of sunscreen applied, sunlight intensity, sweat, swimming and more can all affect how much sun protection you actually receive. There’s also evidence that people tend to stay in the sun longer when wearing high-SPF sunscreens, putting them at risk of overexposure.10

No Evidence in Support of Full-Body Screening for Skin Cancer?

The nervousness people experience over threats of skin cancer such as melanoma is augmented by U.S. government intervention that equates sun exposure with skin cancer.11

Yet, at the same time, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) says there’s not enough evidence that screening for skin cancer can lower skin cancer cases or deaths.

Still, European studies suggest that after public awareness campaigns to inform people about whole body visual screening for skin cancer, the rates of melanoma, the most deadly type of skin cancer, and non-melanoma skin cancers went down, Time reported.12 According to The Washington Post:13

“An editorial accompanying the task force’s statement said the ‘I’ rating [insufficient evidence] does not mean there is not a benefit from screening but that more research is needed to determine if it should be recommended — and, if so, for whom.

… [T]he statement doesn’t apply to people who have skin lesions or any other kind of suspicious growths or to those with an increased risk of cancer or a family history of the disease.”

Optimal Vitamin D Levels Linked to 65 Percent Lower Risk of Cancer

Another way that wearing sunscreen daily has the potential to increase your cancer risk rather than decrease it is by blocking your body’s ability to produce vitamin D.

If you do not get regular sun exposure on your bare skin (or consume a vitamin D3 supplement), there’s a good chance you may be vitamin D deficient, which is a risk factor for cancer. One recent study published in PLOS One found vitamin D levels above 40 ng/mL are associated with a more than 65 percent lower risk of cancer. According to the researchers:14

“We found a clear association between 25(OH)D [vitamin D] serum concentration and cancer risk, according to multiple types of analyses. These results suggest the importance of vitamin D for the prevention of cancer. Women with 25(OH)D concentrations ≥40 ng/ml had a significantly lower risk of cancer (~70 [percent]) compared to women with concentrations <20 ng/ml.”

Optimizing your vitamin D levels may reduce your risk of as many as 16 different types of cancer, including pancreatic, lung, ovarian, breast, prostate and skin cancers.

Higher Vitamin D Levels at Melanoma Diagnosis May Improve Prognosis

Studies show melanoma mortality actually decreases after UV exposure. Additionally, melanoma lesions do not tend to appear primarily on sun-exposed skin, which is why sunscreens have proven ineffective in preventing it. Exposure to sunlight, particularly UVB, is protective against melanoma (the deadliest form of skin cancer) — or rather, the vitamin D your body produces in response to UVB radiation is protective. The following passage comes from The Lancet:15

“Paradoxically, outdoor workers have a decreased risk of melanoma compared with indoor workers, suggesting that chronic sunlight exposure can have a protective effect.”

In another recent study, it was found that vitamin D deficiency at the time of melanoma diagnosis is associated with thicker tumors that likely have a poorer prognosis.16

The researchers believe increasing vitamin D levels to 20 ng/ml or higher (which is actually still a deficiency state) could result in 18 percent of melanoma patients having thinner tumors and therefore improved prognosis. If their levels were increased to optimal levels (50 to 70 ng/ml), it’s likely this rate would improve even more.

Oxybenzone: Another Reason Why Many Sunscreens Are Dangerous

Oxybenzone, a popular sunscreen ingredient that has been detected in nearly every American, is believed to cause hormone disruptions and cell damage that may provoke cancer.

This endocrine-disrupting chemical acts like estrogen in your body, alters sperm production in animals and is also associated with endometriosis in women. It has relatively high rates of skin allergy and is a highly skin-penetrating chemical.17 According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG):18

“… [T]he chemical oxybenzone penetrates the skin, gets into the bloodstream and acts like estrogen in the body. It can trigger allergic reactions. Data are preliminary, but studies have found a link between higher concentrations of oxybenzone and health harms.

One study has linked oxybenzone to endometriosis in older women; another found that women with higher levels of oxybenzone during pregnancy had lower birth weight daughters.”

There’s really no reason to risk exposure to this chemical, as safer alternatives exist. In lieu of the skin-penetrating hormone-disrupting chemicals like oxybenzone, safer sunscreens tend to use non-nanoparticle sized zinc- and titanium-based mineral ingredients, which block the sun’s rays without penetrating your skin.

Four Steps to Safely Enjoying the Sun

Applying chemical sunscreens every time you step outdoors may do little to prevent your risk of skin cancer while raising other risks. In addition, you’re blocking your body’s production of vitamin D and possibly some of sunlight’s other health benefits, like its pain-relieving properties. That being said, you don’t want to overexpose your skin to the sun and end up with a sunburn, either. To continuously enjoy the positive effects of sun exposure without getting burned, I recommend following these simple safety tips:

1. Protect your face and eyes by wearing a wide-brimmed hat or a cap. The skin around these areas is much thinner than other areas of your body and is more at risk for cosmetic photo damage and premature wrinkling. If it’s too hot to protect your skin by covering with light clothing, and you’ll be outside for extended periods, be sure to use a natural mineral-based broad-spectrum sunscreen on your skin — these products often contain zinc.

2. Limit your initial sun exposure and slowly work your way up. If you are a fairly light-skinned individual who tends to burn easily, limit your initial exposure to just a few minutes, especially if it is in the middle of summer. The more tanned your skin gets, the longer you can stay in the sun without burning. If it is early or late in the season and/or you are a dark-skinned individual, you could likely safely have 30 minutes on your initial exposure.

3. Build an internal sunscreen with beneficial antioxidants. Astaxanthin, a potent antioxidant, can be used both internally and topically to protect your skin from the sun. You can make your own lotion by adding astaxanthin to organic coconut oil, but be careful of staining your clothing, as astaxanthin is dark red.

Other helpful antioxidants include proanthocyanidins, resveratrol and lycopene. Eating healthy is also important. Fresh, raw, unprocessed foods deliver the nutrients your body needs to maintain a healthy balance of omega-6 and omega-3 oils in your skin, which is your first line of defense against sunburn.

Fresh, raw vegetables also provide your body with an abundance of powerful antioxidants that will help you fight the free radicals caused by sun damage that can lead to burns and cancer.

4. Moisturize your skin naturally. Before sunbathing, apply organic coconut oil on the exposed areas of your skin (as noted above, you could add some astaxanthin to the oil for an added measure of protection). This will not only moisturize your skin to prevent dryness but will also give you additional metabolic benefits.

The post Sunscreen Won’t Prevent Skin Cancer But Some Could Actually Cause It appeared first on The Sleuth Journal.

Source: Alternative news journal

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NASA: “There’s A Monster Hole In The Sun!” As More Of Their Scientists End Up Dead (VIDEO)

coronal hole

In a recent report NASA has revealed that a monstrous coronal hole (low-density regions of the Sun’s atmosphere), measuring more than ten percent of the Sun’s surface area, has opened up on our star, the sun.

The footage was captured May 17 and 19 by the US space agency’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.

Coronal holes are areas on the Sun where the solar magnetic field extends up and out into interplanetary space, sending solar material speeding out in a high-speed stream of solar wind.

Sometimes these winds interact with the Earth’s magnetic field, creating a geomagnetic storm, which can expose satellites to radiation and interfere with communications signals.

Here’s more on this breaking report…

For More Information See:

The post NASA: “There’s A Monster Hole In The Sun!” As More Of Their Scientists End Up Dead (VIDEO) appeared first on The Sleuth Journal.

Source: Alternative news journal

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Why Sunlight Deficiency Is As Deadly As Smoking (VIDEO)

Why Sunlight Deficiency Is As Deadly As Smoking (VIDEO)

A groundbreaking new study published in the Journal of Internal Medicine has revealed something absolutely amazing about the role of the Sun in human health: a deficiency of sunlight could be as harmful to human health as smoking cigarettes.

The new study titled, “Avoidance of sun exposure as a risk factor for major causes of death: a competing risk analysis of the Melanoma in Southern Sweden cohort,” was conducted by Swedish researchers on a population of almost 30,000 women. They assessed the differences in sun exposure as a risk factor for all-cause mortality, within a prospective 20-year follow up of the Melanoma in Southern Sweden (MISS) cohort. The women were aged 25-64 years at the start of the study and recruited from 1990 to 1992. When their sun exposure habits were analyzed using modern survival statistics they discovered several things.


“Women with active sun exposure habits were mainly at a lower risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and noncancer/non-CVD death as compared to those who avoided sun exposure.”


“As a result of their increased survival, the relative contribution of cancer death increased in these women.”

This finding may be a bit tricky to understand, so let’s look at it a little closer.

Because cancer risk increases along with biological age, the longer you live, the higher your cancer risk will be. Therefore, because increased sunlight exposure actually increases your longevity, it will also appear to increase your risk of cancer. But this does not necessarily mean that sunlight is intrinsically “carcinogenic,” which is commonly assumed.

Because heart disease is #1 killer in the developed world, and since sunlight reduces this most common cause of premature death, even if it increases the risk of the #2 most common cause of death (cancer), the net effect of sunlight exposure is that you will still live longer, which helps to contextualize and neutralize the “increased cancer risk” often observed. Keep in mind, as well, that a huge number of cancers are overdiagnosed and overtreated, without sufficient acknowledgement by the medical establishment, whose culpability is rarely addressed. These “cancers” greatly inflate the statistics. With millions of so-called early stage cancers like these — especially breast, prostate, thyroid, lung, and ovarian — being wrongly diagnosed and treated, the complexity of the topic makes determining the role of sunlight exposure and cancer risk all the more difficult to ascertain.

Moving on, the point about the longevity promoting properties of sunlight are driven home strongly by the third major observation:

“Nonsmokers who avoided sun exposure had a life expectancy similar to smokers in the highest sun exposure group, indicating that avoidance of sun exposure is a risk factor for death of a similar magnitude as smoking.”

This is a powerful finding with profound implications. To say that “avoidance of sun exposure is a risk factor for death of a similar magnitude as smoking,” is to point out that sunlight exposure, rather than being the constant lethal threat it is perceived to be, warranting the slathering on all over the body of synthetic sunscreens virtually guaranteed to cause harm from toxicant exposure, is essential to our health. In fact, according to the CDC, smoking is responsible for 6 million unnecessary deaths a year, and the “overall mortality among both male and female smokers in the United States is about three times higher than that among similar people who never smoked.” And so, sunlight exposure may be so powerful an essential and necessary ingredient in human health that it might be considered medically unethical not to provide access to it, or to advise more routine exposure to it.

The fourth and final observation of the study was that:

“Compared to the highest sun exposure group, life expectancy of avoiders of sun exposure was reduced by 0.6-2.1 years.”

Sunlight Attains Its Former Status As An Indispensable Component of Health

While we can say that sunlight deficiency may contribute to lethal outcomes on par with smoking, we can rephrase the information positively by affirming that the Sun and its light may be as important to human health as is clean food or water. In fact, compelling new research suggests that energy from the Sun drives the cellular bioenergetics of the biomachinery of our bodies through non-ATP dependent processes. Consider the work of Gerald Pollack, PhD, author of the “The 4th Phase of Water” (see video below), who explains how infrared energy of the Sun charges up the water molecules within our body (99% of the molecules in our bodies in number are water) like trillions of molecular batteries.

When pertaining to cardiovascular health, sunlight energy in the form of infrared charged water molecules supports the heart’s job of pumping the blood throughout the blood vessels by producing a form of highly structured and energized water known as Exclusion Zone water, or EZ water, and which may actually provide over 99.9% of the biomechanical energy needed to push the 1.2-1.5 gallons of blood in the average adult body through the literally thousands of miles of blood vessels.  Provocative new research also suggests the body contains a variety of photoacceptors/chromophores (e.g. cytochrome C oxidase) capable of accepting and utilizing sunlight to generate so-called “extra synthesis” of ATP. Additionally, melanin may absorb a wide range of the Sun’s electromagnetic spectrum, converting it into useful energy and perhaps also biologically important information, even perhaps taking harmful gamma radiation and turning it into biologically useful energy. Even something as commonplace in the human diet as chlorophyll has recently been found to act as a means to enhanced the light-harvesting properties of animal cells. In fact, we reported recently on a study that found enhanced ATP production (without the expected concomitant uptick in reactive oxygen species production) through intermediary of chlorophyll metabolites that end up in the mitochondria of our cells following microbiome-mediated digestive processes.

Natural health advocates have sung the praises of sunlight for health since time immemorial. While in modern times, sunlight-phobia is omnipresent, with parents of especially lighter skinned ethnicities forcing their children to don space-suit level all body protective gear, along with spraying or slathering them with extremely toxic petrochemical derivatives and nanoparticle metals with potentially cancer-promoting properties, there is a growing appreciation that we need the Sun as both a form of food, energy and information.

It’s, of course, not all about vitamin D. To reduce the perceived health benefits of sunlight to this hormone like compound is as reductionistic as saying a orange’s health benefits are solely dependent on and reducible to the molecular scaffolding of atoms that comprise the chemical skeleton of the ascorbic acid molecule. We are beginning to learn that certain wavelengths of sunlight activate a wide range of ancient, hard-wired genetic and epigenetic programs, relevant to all of our body’s systems. The wavelengths of light that occur at sunset, for instance, may have been so important to our evolution as a species that our very hairlessness, and our massive brains may not have evolved without daily exposure to them, for hundreds of thousands and even millions of years. This phenomena, also known as biophotomodulation, opens up a radically new perspective on the role of the sun in human health and disease. If sunlight deficiency is really as deadly as actively smoking cigarettes, it could be said that those who do not experience regular natural light exposure are no longer truly human, or capable of experiencing the optimal expression of their biological, mental, and spiritual blueprint. A fundamental right, and health practice, would be daily outdoors exposure. How many of us have considered the state of office workers, institutionalized educational systems without windows, night shift work, and prisons? Sunlight depravation, in light of these new findings, could be considered a significant violation of human health rights. 

This new study my pave the way for a deeper understanding of what humans need to be truly healthy, with sunlight deficiency being a prime example of what is most wrong about our modern incarnation as a primarily indoors focused creature, leading to our physical and psychospiritual degeneration. As new models of cellular bioenergetics emerge, taking into account the ability of the body to directly or indirectly harvest the various light wavelengths of the Sun, direct daily exposure to sunlight may be looked upon as at least as an important step as “taking your vitamins,” or exercising, for maintaining our health. Conversely, sunlight deficiency and/or depravation will be likely be viewed to be as dangerous or lethal as smoking.

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Article Contributed by Sayer Ji, Founder of

Sayer Ji is an author, researcher, lecturer, and advisory board member of the National Health Federation. He founded in 2008 in order to provide the world an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. It is internationally recognized as the largest and most widely referenced health resource of its kind.

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