Health & Wellness
by Aspect County

The Benefits of Getting Some Sunlight This Summer

As summer approaches, the lure of warm, sunny days invites us to step outside and bask in the sunlight. While it’s well-known that excessive sun exposure can be harmful, moderate sunlight offers numerous benefits for our physical and mental well-being. Here’s why spending some time in the sun this summer can be incredibly beneficial, especially when you can enjoy it in the beautiful settings of Kent and Sussex.

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One of the most significant benefits of sunlight is its role in the production of vitamin D. Known as the sunshine vitamin,” vitamin D is crucial for maintaining healthy bones and teeth, supporting the immune system, and regulating the absorption of calcium and phosphorus. Sunlight triggers the synthesis of vitamin D in the skin, and spending just 10 – 30 minutes in the midday sun several times a week can help maintain adequate vitamin D levels. 

Beyond vitamin D, sunlight exposure can also enhance mood and mental health. Sunlight increases the brain’s release of serotonin, a hormone associated with boosting mood and helping a person feel calm and focused. This can be particularly beneficial in combating Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a type of depression that occurs at certain times of the year, usually in winter. Regular exposure to sunlight can help mitigate the symptoms of SAD and improve overall mental health by reducing stress and anxiety levels. Why not soak up the sun in the lush gardens of Sissinghurst Castle or the serene surroundings of Bewl Water?

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Sunlight has also been shown to improve sleep quality. Exposure to natural light during the day helps regulate the body’s internal clock, or circadian rhythm. This can lead to better sleep patterns and more restful nights. Natural light exposure in the morning is particularly effective in synchronizing the circadian rhythm, making it easier to fall asleep at night and wake up refreshed. Consider starting your day with a morning walk along the scenic Seven Sisters cliffs or through the historic grounds of Hever Castle.

Spending time in the sun also encourages outdoor activities, which can lead to increased physical fitness. Whether it’s a walk in the park, a game of beach volleyball, or gardening, outdoor activities help improve cardiovascular health, build muscle, and promote overall physical well-being. Additionally, engaging in physical activities outdoors can foster social connections and improve mental health. Enjoy these activities in the stunning South Downs or the tranquil Ashdown Forest.

Kent and Sussex offer a variety of beautiful beaches perfect for soaking up the summer sun. Hastings, with its historic charm and vibrant tourism, provides a wonderful mix of cultural attractions and seaside relaxation. The town’s beaches are ideal for sunbathing, swimming, or simply enjoying a leisurely stroll along the shore. Pett Level is another hidden gem, offering a quieter and more serene beach experience with stunning views and interesting rock formations. It’s a fantastic spot for those looking to escape the crowds and enjoy a peaceful day by the sea.

Cooden Beach, located near Bexhill, is perfect for families and sun-seekers alike. clear waters provide an excellent environment for a range of outdoor activities, from beachcombing to paddleboarding. The area also boasts charming beach huts and a restaurant, making it easy to spend an entire day basking in the sun and enjoying the local hospitality.