Sunlight: it’s good for more than just tanning. A UK study printed in Britain’s Quarterly Journal of Medicine investigated the link between sunglight deficiency and heart disease. Their findings suggest that the sun is actually cardioprotective. Vitamin D acts as a cholesterol inhibitor, thereby helping in the war against high cholesterol and heart disease. Does this mean you should run to the nearest tanning salon or beach and roast yourself? No. Continue being sun-responsible, but be creative regarding how you get it: exercise, gardening, etc. It is also important to note that seasonal variations in the sun impact cholesterol levels- which is something to consider when making your doctor visits, interpreting lab results, and considering various therapies. This compelling research also makes a good argument for relocating to sun-friendly regions. Read more.
Grimes DS, Hindle E, Dyer T. Sunlight, cholesterol and coronary heart disease.
QJM. 1996 Aug;89(8):579-89. PubMed PMID: 8935479. – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8935479 —-Also see Dr. Grimes hypothesis that statins are just mimicking the role of Vitamin D – 1: Grimes DS. Are statins analogues of vitamin D? Lancet. 2006 Jul 1;368(9529):83-6. Review. PubMed PMID: 16815382.