Preventing the Skin Cancer Melanoma: Education + Water! Water! Water!

May 27, 2011

Why should I worry about melanoma?

Malignant melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancers and is potentially fatal. Melanoma in adults often originates in childhood. Worldwide (including the United States), melanoma is increasing. The good news: Melanoma is preventable, and curable if caught in time.

            The immediate cause of melanoma is cell damage from solar radiation. But the ultimate causes are complex and often involve lifestyle choices, made by your parents, beginning when you were born. Melanoma is a dehydration disease related to chronic loss of water in the skin. Skin dehydration begins at birth and parents MUST educate their children on the importance of water, diet, health and sun protection.

            A child who is healthy, well hydrated (drinks enough water), knows how to protect their skin, and continues these proactive habits as an adult, is far less likely to develop malignant melanoma.

 

How can I reduce my melanoma risk?

¨      Education. It is up to YOU to be proactive and learn all you can about hydration, water, nutrition, skin care and wise lifestyle choices, and teach this to your children. Do not wait for your doctor to bring up these issues and do not wait until symptoms develop.

¨      Water. For healthier, melanoma resistant skin, apply Nature’s Mist all-natural skin moisture (water) before sunscreen, lotion or any other skin application. ( More information…) It is also important to drink eight to ten glasses of pure water a day. Juice, coffee, tear and soft drinks don’t count. Mineral water, vitamin water and flavored water do count (carbonated water contains too much sodium).

¨      Diet.  For healthy skin and eyes, daily servings of dark green leafy vegetables are recommended, such as spinach, arugula and kale. Vitamin D supplements are also beneficial to skin.

¨      Skin color. Fair skinned people are far more susceptible to sunburn and UV damage than darker skinned people, and are therefore less likely to develop skin cancers. However, darker skinned people can develop these diseases and should protect their skin.

¨      Bathing. Soaking baths are excellent for skin health and hydration, and release of skin toxins. Baths should be followed by a quick shower to wash off toxins and soap residue (dried soap is very dehydrating).  

¨      UV radiation/sunscreen. Solar radiation, especially ultraviolet (UV) radiation, is a cause of melanoma. UV radiation can be blocked by clothing, avoiding direct sunlight and by the application of sunscreen with a SPF of at least 15 but preferably as high as possible. Ideally, you should apply sunscreen any time you go in the sun, summer or winter. Cosmetic products are now available that contain sunscreen. Melanoma may also be caused by exposure to other sources of UV radiation, such as tanning beds.

¨      Sugar. Research is discovering numerous ways in which excessive sugar intake may not be good for you. Sugar is dehydrating, can cause weight gain, interferes with antioxidants that keep your body healthy, and creates cravings for unhealthy foods.

¨      Climate. Where you live is obviously important. Melanoma risk is correlated with more sunshine (regardless of temperature), lower humidity and higher air pollution. That does not mean the risk is zero if you live where there is less sunshine, more humidity and less pollution. Where the risk is higher, preventive measures should be increased. And remember that everyone’s level of susceptibility is different.   

¨      Indoor-outdoor. Outdoor air can be dehydrating due to solar radiation, low humidity, air pollution and wind. Indoor air can be dehydrating due to forced-air heating and cooling, and insulated walls and windows. You can raise indoor humidity with bowls of water, house plants and room humidifiers.

¨      Clothing. A white t-shirt has an SPF of about 10 (depending on the thickness of the material). This may be enough to prevent sunburn but may not block UV radiation. Heavier clothing and long sleeves are always recommended in the sun, as are hats and sunglasses.

¨      Sleep and stress. Adequate sleep, stress reduction and exercise can enhance every aspect of your health. The goal should be seven to eight hours of uninterrupted sleep per night.

(More information about Save a Child’s Life…)

©2011 Save a Child’s Life Foundation

Embedded URLs:

http://naturesmist.com/index.php  (Nature’s Mist)

http://www.saveachildslife.org/ (SACL)

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