As early at the 1500s, people visited the seaside in search of better health. Although therapies such as drinking seawater or being repeatedly plunged beneath the ocean’s surface are (Thankfully!) no longer in vogue, modern science tells us that there are benefits to be gleaned from a day at the beach. Consider these five perks: Vitamin D. While there are food sources of Vitamin D, the most effective source continues to be sunshine. This nutrient is essential to the health of bones, skin, and more. Just 10 minutes of unprotected sun exposure is plenty of time to reap the benefits, after which you should apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.
Skin Exfoliation. Forget spa treatments – a barefoot walk on the beach is just what your feet need! Sand is a natural, physical exfoliator that can help polish your feet to a baby soft luster.
Mood Booster. Research from The Mayo Clinic shows that lack of time in the sun can lead to a dip in serotonin levels in the brain – a mood-boosting hormone. Another study out of Australia’s Baker Heart Institute found that the amount of sunlight participants received directly affected their moods. What better place than the beach to enjoy nature’s antidepressant? Of course, your physician should address serious depression.
Exercise. Swimming, walking, surfing, and playing volleyball – being active at the beach is such a natural thing, it’s easy to get exercise without even making a conscious effort.
Screen-Free Break. Too much screen time is associated with elevated stress, loss of sleep, and depression. Since water and sand are both foes of electronics, a day at the beach is the perfect excuse to leave cell phones and tablets behind. Enjoy a technology-free day and get back to basics!
Remember that a day at the beach comes with a commitment to protecting your skin from photo aging and skin cancer. Wear protective clothing, a hat, and sunglasses, seek shade under an umbrella, and wear a broad-spectrum sunblock of SPF 30 or higher. Enjoy the beach in good health!
Resources:beach, Health, summer