Whether it’s snapping selfies of your latest ‘clean eats’, buying up big on the newest fitness fashion trend or slogging it out with your mates six days a week at boot camp — getting fit and healthy is really on trend right now, writes Katie Clift of Cancer Council Queensland.
And it’s not just about getting in the right routine and making new habits – fitness brands are filling our brains with motivating, inspiring manifestos designed to make us ‘keep on running’ and resisting the all-too-frequent food temptations we’re faced with daily.
But a word of caution – don’t be so quick to believe everything a fitness brand may tell you.
While many quotes and manifestos you see on blogs, t-shirts, water bottles and bags are healthy, encouraging, and for some people, revolutionary, we were shocked at Cancer Council Queensland to see one recently from Canadian yogawear maker Lululemon that read:
Sunscreen absorbed into the skin might be worse for you than sunshine. Get the right amount of sunshine.
Whaaaaaaat?!?! This statement ignores the very clear evidence that regular use of sunscreen helps prevent not only skin cancer, but premature ageing. And let’s face it, looking youthful at every age will always be on trend.
As anyone who has ever had bad sunburn will tell you, sunscreen is not worse for you than sunshine. It stops your skin from cooking like a lobster.
And in Queensland, sunscreen is a must for anyone who likes to enjoy the great outdoors, whether it be at work, rest, or play.
There are also misconceptions that some of us don’t get enough vitamin D during winter in Queensland, but research shows Queensland has the lowest rate of vitamin D deficiency nationally, shining some scientific truth on the matter.
In fact, we know that the majority of Queenslanders only need a few minutes of sun exposure on most days, even in winter, for sufficient levels of vitamin D. This exposure should occur before 10am or after 2pm.
Exposure to harmful UV radiation between 10am and 2pm even during winter in Queensland can significantly increase your risk of skin cancer.
You might have heard a few rumours (or read the slogan above yourself) and been confused about the safety of sunscreens that contain nanoparticles, too.
The available evidence suggests that nanoparticles used in sunscreens do not pose a risk to health. In fact, long-term studies of sunscreen use in Australia have found no harmful effects of regular use.
But don’t just take our word for it. The Therapeutic Goods Administration routinely monitors and tests the safety of sunscreens and has found no evidence (none) that sunscreens containing nanoparticles pose any risk. And you might just be surprised how many other everyday products use nanoparticles, without causing any adverse effects on your health.
So, remember to slip, slop, slap, seek, and slide – prevent premature ageing and avoid skin cancer.
Queensland has the highest rates of skin cancer in the world – around 133,000 non-melanoma skin cancers, and about 3000 melanoma skin cancer are diagnosed across the state each year.
By all means buy the best running gear, maintain your mojo, and pour some more almond milk on your quinoa – but don’t be too quick to believe every motivational manifesto you see.
And if you need more information about getting fit and healthy and staying on trend, connect with Cancer Council Queensland via Facebook, online at cancerqld.org.au, or call the Cancer Council Helpline 13 11 20.