Our Skin is a Solar Panel and More

The skin is the largest organ of the body. We don’t often think of it as an organ like the heart, lungs and liver, but an organ it is. In fact, the skin performs a variety of functions and it is in our best interest to keep the skin functioning at it’s best. Read on to do just that.

The skin involves several layers, each with a purpose. But overall the skin does some very important tasks, none more important than gathering sunlight. In short, the skin is a solar panel. Before we get to that, here are some other functions of the skin.

  1. Protection: a barrier between outside the body and inside, protecting us against viral, bacterial, fungal and parasite organisms. Cells in the skin are part of the immune system.
  2. Sensation: contains nerve endings to sense hot, cold, touch, pressure, vibration, and pain.
  3. Temperature: sweat glands and dilated blood vessels can release heat and cool the body; constriction of blood vessels can limit heat loss.
  4. Water resistance: keeps us from absorbing water and thus diluting essential vitamins and minerals.
  5. Stores nitrates: To control blood pressure and assist in anti-microbial defense and wound healing.

The Original Solar Panel

Okay, that distinction goes to plants whose leaves collect energy from the sun and convert it to glucose. Human skin collects sunlight and converts it into vitamin D. It does so by interacting with cholesterol, making a slight molecular tweak, and voila, vitamin D.

People with the highest natural levels of vitamin D have the lowest risk of everything. Vitamin D receptors are located on just about every cell in the body, highlighting its importance.

Sunlight to the eye reaches the back of the eye called the retina. This is how we see. But the UVA/UVB signal the retina to send information to the brain. This ends up making melatonin, the MASTER hormone of the body.

Healthy Skin

  1. Sunburn bad, sunshine good. Start slowly with your sun exposure and gradually build up.
  2. Get sun in the morning by watching the sunrise. Get noontime sun and in the afternoon.
  3. Eat healthy organic Paleo foods with plenty of natural antioxidants to protect your skin.
  4. Load up on seafood. The omega-3 fatty acids in wild salmon, sardines and anchovies protect the skin from sunburn and sun damage.
  5. Wear organic sunscreen for prolonged exposure. (For the best sunscreen and seafood options, head to our page, What We Use).
  6. Use evidence-based supplements. Nothing is more important than our multivitamin for skin health.

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