Doctors roast Aussie media over unsafe sun exposure messaging

Source: Xinhua| 2019-01-07 10:10:27|Editor: Lu Hui
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SYDNEY, Jan. 7 (Xinhua) -- A new study on Monday has shown that Australian media are sending mixed messages when it comes to unsafe UV exposure, at times urging readers to forgo "sun safe" advice in order to boost vitamin D.

Analyzing over 200 newspaper articles through an online database between 2000 and 2017, author of the Study, Dr Stephanie Blake, from the University of New South Wales told Xinhua one particular article even suggested that obtaining "a gentle pinking" from sun burn may have a health benefit.

"One of the most vital aspects of this study is that both sun exposure and ensuring you get adequate vitamin D are equally important."

"It's not about preferencing one over the other," she explained. "It's about striking the right balance to make sure that you are doing the right thing by your health."

While Australia is a hot, dry continent with extremely high UV levels, around 25 percent of the population is believed to be deficient in vitamin D.

Making matters complicated, however, is that around two thirds of all Australians will develop skin cancer at some time in their lives, according to Blake.

"So it is particularly important for our population to be vigilant against the dangers of sun exposure," she said.

"We need to get that message out there that measured sun exposure and using sun protection appropriately is vital to make sure that people are keeping themselves safe but also not putting themselves at risk of having low vitamin D."