Are you aware of the effects certain vitamins may have on your skin? Recent studies have shown that certain types of vitamins, if taken in high doses, can increase your risk of sun sensitivity. Some minerals and nutrients can greatly impact how sun-sensitive our skin is, for better or worse.
In this article, we’ll explore major vitamins that cause sun sensitivity and tips for proper use so you can enjoy some time in the sun without worrying about any potential harm to your skin.
Vitamins are essential organic compounds that we need in small quantities. Different vitamins have different roles in our body, which work together to maintain our health and bodily functions.
Vitamins are micronutrients that are essential for healthy body functioning. Our bodies require them to regulate and perform many different functions, like producing energy, regulating hormones, supporting the nervous system, and improving immunity.
Vitamins are categorized into two major groups. First are fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, K, and E), which can be stored in the body; Second, water-soluble vitamins (B and C), which are not stored in the body.
Vitamins have a range of uses, including:
- Boosting immune system health
- Enhancing mental performance
- Supporting healthy vision and skin
- Improving joint health
- Regulating metabolism rate
- Supporting healthy heart and circulatory systems
- Promoting reproductive health
Why do I have sensitivity to sunlight?
Sun sensitivity is usually caused by a combination of various factors, including excessive exposure to the sun and certain medications or medical conditions.
Some people will be more sensitive to sunlight due to their skin type, age, lifestyle habits, and genetic makeup.
People with lighter eye colors may experience more light sensitivity due to a lack of pigment in the eyes, which is responsible for protecting them against harsh lighting.
And those who have lighter skin tones are also sensitive to sun damage as they lack melanin, the natural pigment that protects your skin from the sun.
Certain medications and medical conditions are also responsible for your increase in your risk of experiencing sun sensitivity.
Medication like antibiotics, high blood pressure medications, heartburn medicines, and chemotherapies can make you more sensitive to sunlight.
What deficiency causes sun sensitivity?
Vitamin D deficiency is one of the most common causes of sun sensitivity. Vitamin D3 is fat-soluble vitamin that helps your body to absorb calcium and phosphorus. The right amount of vitamin D, phosphorus, and calcium is very important for building and keeping strong bones.
Your body naturally produces Vitamin D3 after exposure to sunlight or UV rays, but if you are not absorbing enough Vitamin D, you may become more sensitive to the sun’s rays.
Some other vitamin deficiencies can also cause sun sensitivity. For example, Vitamin B6 is important for maintaining healthy skin and nerve cells and aids in producing melatonin, which helps us sleep at night.
Low levels of Vitamin B6 can increase sun sensitivity as your body cannot produce enough melanin to protect your skin from harmful UV sun’s rays.
Does Vitamins cause sun sensitivity?
Yes, some vitamins and minerals can increase your risk of experiencing sun sensitivity when taken in high amounts or if you have a deficiency in these vitamins. Vitamin D and B6 are two main contributors that can cause increase in sun sensitivity.
In addition, a lack of vitamin E can also be responsible for sun-related skin issues due to its role in regulating the body’s inflammatory response.
It’s important to consult with your healthcare provider before taking any new supplement or medication, as these may increase the risk of sun sensitivity.
How can I reduce my sun sensitivity?
Reducing the sun sensitivity is not as difficult as you think. It is just a game of some simple steps. If you follow them, I guarantee that 90% of your problems are solved associated with sunburn and other forms of skin allergy.
- The most important step is to use sunscreen with SPF of (sun protection factor) at least 30, even on cloud days. Sunscreens should be applied on all exposed skin area at least 15 minutes before going outside and reapplied every two hours or more often if swimming or sweating.
- The sun’s rays are strongest between 10 am and 4 pm. Seek shade when outdoors during peak sun intensity.
- Wear sunglasses for the protection of your eyes from UV rays.
- Wear protective clothing like long-sleeve shirts, pants, and wide-brimmed hats when outdoors
- Avoid tanning beds and sun lamps
- Eat a balanced diet that are rich in vitamins and minerals
- Take vitamin supplements if you are deficient in certain nutrients
Follow These Tips to Protect Your Skin from the Sun
Many types of prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines, herbal supplements, and skincare products are applied directly to the skin, and even some foods also enhance skin sensitivity.
Here are some of the most commonly used medicines and substances that can cause sun sensitivity:
- Accutane: It is frequently used for treating severe acne and can seriously increase your skin’s sensitivity to sunlight.
- Doxycycline: An antibiotic often prescribed for a variety of infections. Doxycycline is also known to cause photosensitivity, leading to an increased risk of sunburn.
- Ibuprofen (Advil): A commonly used anti-inflammatory drug, Ibuprofen can cause increased sensitivity to sunlight in some people.
- St. John’s Wort: Often used in herbal medicine for its antidepressant effect, St. John’s Wort can cause significant photosensitivity.
- Dong Quai: A popular herb that is used in traditional Chinese medicines, Dong Quai is known to increase sensitivity to the sun, especially when taken in a concentrated form.
- Citrus Fruits (topically on the skin): If you apply citrus fruits topically, it can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight.
Can sun sensitivity be cured?
Sun sensitivity is not any illness or condition. It is a reaction to the sun’s rays that cannot be cured in a traditional sense. However, there are some steps that you can take to reduce the risk of sun sensitivity and protect yourself from further damage caused by sunlight.
By following the tips above, you can help prevent increased sun sensitivity and enjoy the outdoors without worrying about skin damage.
Consult with your doctor about any medications that you are taking that can help reduce your risk of sun sensitivity and other skin issues caused by the sun’s rays.
Vitamins are essential for our body and overall health, but certain vitamins can cause sun sensitivity when taken in high doses or if there is a deficiency.
Vitamins that cause sun sensitivity include vitamin D and B6, and sometimes, vitamin E deficiency can also increase the skin’s sensitivity to sunlight. Some medications and foods we discuss above can also contribute to photosensitivity.
To reduce your risk of sun sensitivity, it is important to protect yourself with sunscreen and other forms of protection when outdoors. Be sure to speak with your doctor about any vitamins or supplements you are taking, as they can increase your skin sensitivity.
What foods cause sun sensitivity?
Citrus fruits like lemons or oranges and vegetables like celery, fennel, and parsley can increase sensitivity to the sun.
Some supplements and drugs can also lead to an increase in sun sensitivity. It’s important to check with your doctor before taking any new supplements or medications, as they could further increase your risk of photosensitivity.
Does vitamin C cause sun damage?
Vitamin C does not directly cause sun damage. However, taking a supplement that is rich in Vitamin A could make your skin more prone to sunburn or other types of damage due to its role in cell regeneration.
How can I reduce sun exposure naturally?
The best way to reduce sun exposure naturally is by wearing protective clothing like long-sleeve shirts, pants, and wide-brimmed hats when outdoors. Seeking shade during peak sun intensity hours between 10 am and 4 pm can also reduce your risk of sunburn.