8 Laws of Natural Health:
S U N S H I N E
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. Genesis 1:3, 4.
Of all the works of creation that the Lord has made, our sun is one of the most important to us. It was the Creator's design that the sun would warm the earth, provide light, and heal all living things from decay and disease. The sun gives our planet the ability to sustain life, and provides the energy needed for plant and animal growth and development.
The sun is our nearest star and was created by God on the fourth day of the creation week. (See Genesis 1:16) It produces almost all energy on earth, either directly or indirectly. Like most stars, our sun is made of 71% hydrogen, 27 % helium, and 2% other elements. The internal temperature of the sun is about 29,000,000 degrees F., while the surface is about 10,800 degrees F. The corona, which is an area around the sun that extends thousands of miles, has temperatures as high as 1,800,000 degrees F. All this energy is made by fusing about 600 million tons of hydrogen with helium every second. It would be like exploding 100 billion one megaton hydrogen bombs per second. These facts are mind boggling and hard to relate to, but without all that energy our planet would freeze and die in a matter of hours! The sunlight, along with all its energy, takes about 8 minutes to reach earth. Its warming, bright rays energizes all life. It also affects our weather, air, and ocean currents.
The Many Healing Benefits Of Sunlight:
The sun gives off visible and invisible light and infrared and ultraviolet rays. It is through the ultraviolet rays that we receive healing. One of the most important vitamins we use is vitamin D, which our bodies make when the ultraviolet rays come in contact with our skin. Our body needs vitamin D for calcium and for phosphorus absorption. Vitamin D stabilizes calcium and phosphorus in our bones and teeth. When vitamin D is lacking, bone diseases such as osteoporosis, which affects about 25% of all women 55 years and older, is possible; therefore, elderly people, as well as children, need lots of sunshine. Insufficient levels of vitamin D will cause weak hearts, poor metabolism, slow healing of bones and cuts, and rickets in children.
Direct exposure to sunlight by sunbathing can greatly benefit the entire body, when done in moderation. The following list is an aid in what exposure to sunlight can do for your body:
- Increases production of white blood cells which aids in building up the immune system.
- Increases red blood cells and promotes good circulation of the blood --remember, blood likes warmth, and will always flow to the warmest part of the body.
- Stimulates the liver, assisting it to break down toxins that could cause cancer and other diseases. It also stimulates other internal organs and glands such as the pancreas, stomach, kidneys, thyroid and adrenal glands.
- Cholesterol and triglyceride levels are lowered in the blood, thus protecting the heart and arteries.
- Sunlight, fresh air, and exercise combined, have an electrifying effect upon the brain and the nervous system. Try it, it really works! When stress comes knocking on your door, escape into God's nature. It's a real healing experience!
- Sunlight kills germs and bacteria. This is nature's way of protecting us from disease. The rooms in our homes that are not exposed to sunlight and fresh air can become damp, setting up a breeding ground for bacteria and germs. Over fifty-five years ago, Dr. Lawrence Garrod, a professor of bacteriology at the University of London discovered that the dust on the floor of hospital rooms contained many types of bacteria that produced disease. He also found that sunlight would kill the bacteria in the dust particles. Dr. Lawrence P. Garrod, British Medical Journal, 1:247.(1944)
- In the summer, and especially the winter, open your shades and windows to expose your home to sunlight and fresh air. This will go far in fighting colds and flu.
- Increases the amount of oxygen going to the tissues.
- Increases melatonin levels which results in many benefits, such as slowing down the aging process and promoting better quality sleep.
- It has been found to increase serotonin production which helps prevent fatigue and depression.
- It can help people who are suffering from joint diseases such as arthritis, as the warmth of the sun's rays will loosen up stiff and aching joints.
- Lowers blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Insulin dependent diabetics need to take special care when sunbathing because when the sun comes in contact with insulin it can have a hypoglycemic effect. Diabetics may need to adjust their dose of insulin if they are going to be sunbathing on a regular basis. Please consult your family doctor for advice on changing your insulin dosage. Never change any medicine without consulting a doctor first.
- Wounds heal faster and many skin conditions are helped when exposed to the sun.
Indirect Effects Of Sunlight:
The sun is responsible for providing the energy that all plant life needs in order to grow and develop. Every meal we eat is the effect of God's nature working together for our service and benefit. Nature can teach us many important lessons in life if we will observe and practice them. Sunlight reacts on the green leafy plants in a process called photosynthesis in which light, water and plant chlorophyll produce food for our use. During this process the carbon dioxide which we exhale into the air is changed into a fresh supply of oxygen for us to breathe.
"...Thou hast prepared the light and the sun." Psalms 74:16.
As you can see the sun is very healing when used properly and we need to take full advantage of this as often as possible. To do so one needs to sunbathe. This is easy enough during the summer months but rather difficult in the winter, especially in the colder climates. To get the most benefit from the sun in the winter one could build an outdoor sunbathing unit. This is a very small building which has a slanted exposure in place of a roof, that faces the sun. The exposed area should be covered with plastic, not glass, as glass cuts out about 95% of the ultraviolet rays and it is these rays that are beneficial to us.
The best times to sunbathe in the summer are between 8:00-9:30 AM or later in the afternoon after 2:00 PM. In the winter the best time is between 10 AM and 2 PM. One should also take care as not to burn the skin by starting out with 10-15 minutes of exposure, then gradually working up to 30-45 minutes a day.
Suntan lotions and oils are not recommended as they contain ingredients such as urocanic acid and oils that can cause skin cancer and tumors. It is not only the oil in our diet that can cause cancer but it is also the oil that we smear all over the outside as well. Clean skin is the best and safest way to enjoy the sun. Expose as much skin to the sun as is modest as the healing rays of the sun cannot penetrate clothing.
Sunglasses and prescription glasses should not be worn. Our eyes need the healing rays of the sun just as much, if not more, than other parts of our bodies. By wearing glasses we almost completely cut out the healing benefits of the sun as the ultraviolet rays are unable to pass through the glass. You just need to close your eyes and look at the sun as the rays can penetrate through your eyelids.
Our Lord is a very kind and merciful Creator and He knows what is best for us both spiritually and physically. The sun is a free gift to us from Him and we need to know how to use it for the greatest benefit. Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun. Ecclesiastes 11:7.
The Cancer Risk:
Many people believe that the sun causes cancer, but when used properly the sun can help heal some types of cancer. By assisting the immune system to do its job more efficiently, the sun can be very beneficial in the healing process. The body's metabolism is increased with exposure to the sun, thus increasing the body's ability to rid itself of toxins. It is this build-up of toxins that can lead to cancer.
Diet is also a major cause of cancer. People who are on the "Standard American Diet" (SAD) which consists of high protein, high intake of animal fats, lots of junk food, soft drinks, vegetable oils, partially hydrogenated oils, dairy products. and shortenings are exposing themselves to high skin cancer risk. The ultraviolet rays will react with the fats that are in the blood near the skin's surface and the reaction will be carcinogenic, or cancer producing. Sunlight is a factor, but the real culprit is fat. Remove the fats from the diet, and then the sunlight will be a real healing benefit to the body as God intended it to be.
From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD's name is to be praised. Psalms 113:3.
Condensed from an article by Dr. Michael Casey and Ashley Cunningham