Importance of Sunlight


Trinity P. Haynes , Reporter

Summer is approaching. And so far, all we’ve known here in Washington is gloomy weather. Well prepare for warm sunny skies with these things you can do this summer.   

 Catch some rays 

Whether you’re a hiker, swimmer, taking a trip to the beach, or just a walk/sitting on your porch in the sun. Getting sunlight can have various benefits and is healthy (in moderation) after a couple of seasons with little/to no sun. Some benefits of sunlight can be: 

  • Strengthens your immune system 
  • Better sleep quality  
  • Uplift your mood and increase energy.  
  • Lower blood pressure/lower stress 
  • Can improve mental health.  

How sunlight can improve mental health: 

Sunlight is shown to release serotonin (basically happy-feely chemicals) in your brain. Serotonin boosts your mood and can make you relaxed/focused. Sun is also very important when it comes to vitamin D/ vitamin D affects a lot, like mental health, bone health, and overall good health. Sun is the best and most natural form of vitamin D, and it only takes 10-15min a day to feel the difference. Studies show that people who live in places with less sunlight tend to face more mental health issues overall lack of motivation/gloominess. It turns out “sunny disposition” is more than just an expression: Researchers at BYU found more mental health distress in people during seasons with little sun exposure.  

Vitamin D is also beneficial for bone health (including your teeth) to keep them strong and healthy.  

Lower Blood pressure- When sunlight hits your skin, your body releases something called nitric oxide into your blood, ultimately lowering blood pressure and increasing heart health. Low blood pressure can reduce the risk for cardiac disease and stroke.  

 The sun can be your body’s best friend both physically and mentally.  

So here are some activities you can do this summer to get out and catch some sun: 

  • Enjoy a picnic 
  • Go for a walk/run 
  • Do chalk (maybe even invite a younger sibling or friend). 
  • Have a water fight 
  • Go swimming, pools. Lakes, at the beach, etc. Or hiking if that’s more your style. You could also go on a boat or paddle-boarding.  
  • Find a field to go collect fruits, like strawberries, blueberries, or even a flower field. 
  • Visit Mt Rainier Phone: (360) 569-2211 –for Mt Rainier national park. 
  • Explore the Olympic national park, or other natural parks in the area.  
  • Pike place market Address: 85 Pike St, Seattle, WA 98101 
  • Washington state farmers markets 
  • Even just do yoga, walk a dog, read a book outside.  

Tips for having fun in the sun: 

  • Remember to apply sunscreen and stay hydrated.  
  • Wear sunglasses for eye protection against UV Rays 
  • Wear short-sleeved clothes and clothes that aren’t too warm for the hot weather.  
  • Avoid extra hot times during the day 
  • And make sure the sidewalks/roads aren’t too hot for your pet’s paws to avoid burns.