Sun is a solar body that supports life on Earth and provides living creatures with multiple benefits. It gives energy for plant growth, to the animal kingdom, and it is necessary for climate change. One of the activities related to the sun is sun-gazing, the act of looking at the sun directly. This essay will discuss the benefits of sun-gazing, which include increased vitamin D concentration in the body and an elevated level of serotonin. Moreover, the lack of sunlight may lead to seasonal affective disorder.
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The first benefit of sun-gazing is that it leads to the production of Vitamin D. This substance is produced in the body as a result of the interaction between ultraviolet light and Vitamin D precursor. It is essential for calcium homeostasis and the health of the bones. It was also found by Muscogiuri et al. (263) that this substance is necessary for sleep maintenance, decreasing the number of instances of nocturnal awakening. The deficiency of this vitamin is related to different metabolic disorders, osteomalacia, osteoporosis, and cancers (Muscogiuri et al. 263). That is why it is crucial to be exposed to the sun, and sun-gaze in the mornings and early evenings. People who live in cloudy areas have to regularly uptake Vitamin D in the form of supplements.
The next benefit of sun-gazing is that it elevates levels of serotonin. Serotonin is a biological molecule that affects the mood of the individual and maintains overall well-being sense. It is often targeted in medication development to treat anxiety, depression, and other disorders. It was found that people have a higher concentration of serotonin in their blood and better mood respectively on sunny days, no matter if the weather is cold or hot (Park). Moreover, according to the results of the autopsy, people who died during summer had higher levels of the hormone than people who died during winter (Park). This suggests that regular sun-gazing and exposure to the sun will elevate the level of this hormone, improving well-being. The last evidence to the benefit of sun-gazing is that its lack may lead to seasonal affective disorder. The seasonal affective disorder is a type of depression that changes its pattern according to the current season (Seasonal Affective Disorder). One of the causes of this disorder is a decreased level of serotonin. As was described above, exposure to sunlight can maintain a normal concentration of this hormone. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, one of the treatments that have been used since the 1980s is light therapy (Seasonal Affective Disorder). During the procedure, a patient is exposed to bright light to compensate for the lack of sun during the dark months.
Although it was stated above that exposure to the sun is beneficial, the amount of sunlight has to be regulated. People who stay under the sun for too long can receive short-term or long-term skin damage. Short-term damage implies sunburns accomplished by blistering and pain, while long-term damage can lead to skin cancer, the most prevalent type of tumors. That is why it is crucial to be protected while sun-gazing and being exposed to the sun. The protective measures include wearing sunglasses, applying sunscreens daily, and not staying under the sun for too long.
To conclude, sun-gazing and overall exposure to the sun is a popular and effective method to deal with different deficiencies and disorders. One of the benefits of sun-gazing is that it leads to an elevated level of Vitamin D, which is crucial for skeleton development. Another benefit is that the sun contributes to increased levels of serotonin, a hormone of well-being. Lastly, sun-gazing is one of the treatments for seasonal affective disorder.
Muscogiuri, Giovanna. “The Lullaby of the Sun: The Role of Vitamin D in Sleep Disturbance.” Sleep Medicine, vol. 54, no. 2019, 2018, pp. 262-265.
Park, Alice. “Why Sunlight Is So Good For You.” Time, 2017, Web.
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“Seasonal Affective Disorder.” National Institute of Mental Health, Web.