What’s Up, Doc?
Summer’s Questions, answered…
Q: What is your take on sunscreen? I used to wear it religiously everyday, but now I only wear it when I know for sure I'll be in the sun, like a beach day or when hiking. I feel like my skin has improved with wearing less product, even though I was wearing a "natural, organic" one before. But I'm also wondering if I'm making a mistake and getting more wrinkles without me really knowing it! So my question is do you really think we should be wearing sunscreen every day, and which do you feel like is the best one when we do wear it? Thank you!
This is such a fantastic question!
The sunscreen debate is a tricky one—it is important to protect our skin from excessive UV rays, but most sunscreens on the market are incredibly toxic. Using a mineral, all natural sunscreen (my favorite is Suntegrity) is a non-negotiable, but the question of “do I really need to use it daily?” is more of a personal question.
If you have a lifestyle where you are spending 15 or more consecutive minutes or more out in the sun, sunscreen is always a good call. But if your skin is asking for more breathing room, I would highly recommend leaning more on alternative forms of sun protection, such as a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses.
And speaking of wrinkles, hats and glasses are the best way to prevent them as opposed to sunscreen because if you are still exposing your skin to the sun (even with sunscreen) UV rays are still aging your skin.
Q: I have heard about the practice of “grounding” and how important it is, but I don’t really understand why or how to do it. I feel like summer might be a good time to start to try? Help!
I talk about grounding, or earthing a lot. By now, most of us are familiar with what the practice is—allowing ourselves to physically connect with nature.
Every morning without fail, I walk barefoot through the garden, watering the plants and harvesting flowers. Every evening we play barefoot on our property. Why do I make a point to do this every single day?
Researchers conducted a study using instrumentation that allowed them to see changes in brain waves, neuromuscular function, and a few other parameters when human subjects were put in physical contact (shoes off standing in nature) with the earth. What they found was that restoring the natural electrical potential of the earth to the human body (grounding, or earthing) RAPIDLY affects human electrophysiological and physiological parameters. The extreme rapidity of these changes indicates a physical/bioelectrical mechanism rather than a biochemical change. In plain English, what they found were major reductions in overall stress levels, tension, autonomic balance, system-wide relaxation, clearer judgement, intuitive process, and perceiving the whole.
In other words, grounding, or physically connecting with nature, is one of the best things to bring your entire being back into alignment. Grounding can be as simple as taking your shoes off and standing the grass on your lunch break, or heading into the woods for the weekend to camp on the land. Whatever it is, this is a daily practice that should be integrated by all. To get more ideas on how to ground properly, see the handout here.
One of the most exciting features of LASP new releases is “What’s up, Doc?”—an opportunity for you to submit whatever health questions are on your mind, and have them answered. Wondering what the most bioavailable form of vitamin D is? Ask! Curious what practices would support better sleep? Ask! One to two questions will be chosen and discussed in detail here, allowing our entire community to benefit.