In Genesis 1:3 & 16 we read about the seventh principle of WELLNESS - Sunshine. We read, “Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light.” “Then God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night.”

Can you imagine what it would be like to not see the light of day for a whole month? Imagine how cold the earth would be, how depressed you would feel, how lifeless this planet would be. Life ceases to exist in the complete absence of sunlight, and in preparing for the creation of man, God created light. Sunshine is vital to human life and well-being.

Daily sunshine to the hands and face for 30 minutes in dark-skinned and 15 minutes in lightskinned individuals will provide sufficient vitamin D production for the body’s needs. And vitamin D is linked to a number of health benefits.

Most notably, vitamin D helps to regulate the absorption and utilization of calcium and phosphorus in the body, thus aiding in bone health and helping prevent osteoporosis and decreasing arthritic problems. Research has shown that vitamin D is an immune system modulator, and may be an important way of helping prevent illnesses like the common cold. Vitamin D deficiency is implicated in the development of multiple sclerosis, a disorder that causes degeneration of part of the nerve cells in the brain. It has also been associated with improved brain function in the elderly. Vitamin D levels correlate with successful weight loss, and it has been shown to decrease asthma symptoms. Vitamin D has been shown to decrease the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis. And finally, certain cancers are more common in individuals with low vitamin D levels than those with normal levels, indicating that vitamin D may protect against cancer development.

Vitamin D isn’t the only benefit of sunshine. Cholesterol is converted to Vitamin D in the presences of sunshine, thus mildly decreasing cholesterol levels. Depression is less common and severe in those with adequate sunlight exposure, and in fact , sunshine or ultraviolet therapy is prescribed for individuals with seasonal affective disorder (a type of depression that is seen in individuals during the winter months when there is less sunshine available). Sunlight kills many types of viruses and bacteria, and helps with healing wounds. It also helps modulate the sleep/wake cycle by regulating the release of melatonin.

So get outside on a regular basis and get your sunshine, but be sure to not overdue it. Remember to be temperate in your sunshine exposure as well, because skin cancers are associated with too much sun exposure.

God bless you abundantly as you learn to live God’s WELLNESS way.