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So, why exactly is sunburn no longer an issue for me?

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  • So, why exactly is sunburn no longer an issue for me?


    Been primal for about three months now. I'm sure it has been addressed many times in the past, but a search didn't yield much in the "why?" department. Once the weather breaks, I tend to spend my lunch breaks outside. Whether it's just sitting on the gate of my car, eating my lunch, and basking in the sunlight, or going for a walk - I try to soak up some sun. Anyway, you get the picture, I'm sure. No longer burning, slower to tan (used to be a relative term, but maybe not anymore), and while I've read many times over that happens, I'm curious as to why?!

    Edit: Looking for the "science" or what exactly triggers the tolerance.
    Last edited by wayfaring stranger; 04-19-2012, 08:56 AM. Reason: clarification

  • #2
    Well one thing for sure, if you are making a point to be outside more.. then you will probably be going out in the sun earlier in the year.. so you'll start to develop a light tan slowly.. instead of staying inside like a hermit and then sitting out all day on the beach in direct sunlight in July.
    Primal since March 2011

    Female/29 years old/5' 1"/130ish lbs


    • #3
      If I remember correctly- the super-pale European skin is both a reaction to less sunlight than in Africa AND (this explains the swarthy Inuit) the grains that suck up your vitamin D. If you don't eat grains and have enough D through sunlight or supplementation, your skin isn't sucking up sunlight like it's going out of style. (Sorry, I don't have links, but this is the internet, so truuuust me )

      Activia- out here, you can get burned on your lunch break if you're prone to it. The sun is, ah, wicked My blog exploring the beginning stages of learning how to homestead. With the occasional rant.

      Originally Posted by TheFastCat: Less is more more or less

      And now I have an Etsy store: CattailsandCalendula


      • #4
        Taking vitamin D made me less prone to burning. You are building up a base tan to protect your skin, but you are also generating natural vitamin D which makes even skin that doesn't have a base tan burn less easily. I don't know the mechanism.
        age 56, type 2 diabetes, swimmer
        low carb since 2006 thanks to Jenny, primal since Jan. 2012


        • #5
          I've been supplementing with D, so that piece makes sense. It's all just very interesting to me. That aforementioned "pale European skin" is definitely what's stretched over my bones. Haha. My whole life, I've burned, or at the very least, had to go through some bout of burning before tanning.


          • #6
            i have no idea, but i'm glad that you (and others) notice it too! totally crazy, and yet demonstrably the case.

            my own theory is that it's related to fat intake and healthy oil in the skin... or maybe better vitamin absorption due to the fat. but when i used to do a full-on ketogenic version of paleo, i literally didn't burn and didn't even get uncomfortable. after giving that up and adding in more carbs and a bit less fat, i still don't burn and its tougher to tan, but i'm not quite superman, like in the keto days. honestly, not that i long to be back in ketosis (god no!), but there's something about high fat/ultra low carb that has a profound effect on your ability to burn or tan. weird!


            • #7
              My understanding and experience is that yes, this happens, but there isn't a lot of science to explain why.

              I will also add that a Vietnamese beach in summertime, full sun, can still burn a pale primal pretty pink.
              If you are new to the PB - please ignore ALL of this stuff, until you've read the book, or at least and this (personal fave):