More Sunshine Can Help Alleviate IBD
A recent article in the medical journal Gut noted that people who lived in sunnier states had a lower incidence of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (1). The researches theorized that the cause could be attributed to higher plasma vitamin D levels found in people exposed to more sunlight.
The takeaway for those of us in the not-so-sunny states is twofold. First we need to make sure that our vitamin D levels are where they need to be. If vitamin D levels are low the issue can be remedied by supplementation as directed by your physician. Secondly, it may be wise to spend 20 minutes per day outdoors. Not only does it help vitamin D levels but people who spend time exercising outdoors had more relief from stress than those who did so indoors.
Obviously this is not carte blanche to start tanning. Excessive sun exposure can lead to premature aging as well as skin cancers. Some IBD medications can also make you more sun sensitive so be aware of that issue as well. Please discuss any changes you make to your treatment with your physician.