How Much Sunlight Is Equivalent to Vitamin D Supplementation?

Cancer, Mental Health
Readers of this blog are well aware than many (if not most) Americans have insufficient to deficient levels of vitamin D. Other than prescribing oral vitamin D or vitamin D-containing foods, we doctors were left with prescribing a little sunshine. But, we know that exposing your skin to unprotected UVA or UVB light can increase your risk of skin cancer. And, there has been controversy about exactly how much sunlight one might need to avoid vitamin D supplements. Now, I may have an answer for you. But, first a few basics. Vitamin D is essential for bone mineralization and may have a wide variety of other health benefits. Here are just a few I've blogged about: Vitamin D Supplementation and Cancer Prevention Vitamin D helps fend off flu and asthma…
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Breast-Fed Babies Know When to Say When — May Prevent Obesity Later

Children's Health, Nutritional Health, Parenting
Many healthcare experts believe breast-fed babies are less likely to become overweight and obese in childhood and later in life -- but, we've never really understood why. Now, a new study in the journal Pediatrics is suggesting that cues which a breast-fed baby learns, that a bottle-fed infant doesn't learn, may help later on. Here's a report from HealthDay News with the details: Babies who are fed directly from the breast in early infancy tend to consume less later in infancy than their bottle-fed counterparts, new research suggests. This kind of self-regulation of food intake may help explain why past research has found that breast-feeding protects against obesity. "Infant self-regulation can indeed be affected by how the milk is delivered to the baby," said the study's lead author, Dr. Ruowei Li,…
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World’s first fully approved cannabis drug on sale in UK

Alternative Medicine, Bioethics, Cancer, Mental Health
A medication called Sativex has become the first drug fully approved for multiple sclerosis that is made from natural cannabis according to a report in WebMD. Here are the details: The United Kingdom's Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency approved the drug, an oral spray, earlier this year. The drug has been available in Canada on a limited basis since 2005 for the relief of neuropathic pain and advanced cancer pain, and also to a small number of patients in Spain. It is expected to be approved more broadly in Spain later this year. Sativex is approved by prescription only for multiple sclerosis patients in the U.K. It targets the effects of spasticity, a symptom of multiple sclerosis caused by damage to nerves in the central nervous system. Loss of…
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