Health in a Minute: Dressing for Sun Protection & Probiotics

Health in a Minute | For Her

Dress for Less…Sun Exposure, That Is!

Summertime outfits are more than a fashion statement – they help protect your skin, too. Proper clothing can offer more foolproof protection than sunscreen, which must be applied correctly and reapplied often. Here are some tips to help you choose a summer look that’s as functional as it is fashionable.

smiling woman dressed for sun protection looking out

Choose fabrics that are either dark or brightly colored, as they absorb more UV rays and offer more protection than whites or pastels.

Opt for dense, tightly woven fabrics like polyester or denim that offer more protection than lightweight fabrics, which tend to let more light pass through.

Wear tightly woven hats with wide brims (at least three inches) to protect common skin cancer sites like the face, neck, and ears. 

Opt for loose-fitting clothing. Wearing tight clothing can strain the fabric and allow more light to pass through.

Look for clothing with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) rating. Like SPF ratings on sunscreen, this will give you an idea of how much sun protection you can expect. 

Pondering Probiotics

Though research is limited, some clinical studies suggest that probiotics can improve gut health and aid healthy digestion. But how beneficial are the standard probiotic supplements you can find in the store? There are a few things to consider.

Probiotics are generally considered safe, as they contain strains of bacteria that directly add to the population of healthy microbes in your gut. However, there are hundreds of different strains of these bacteria, and they serve various purposes. Researchers
 are still trying to figure out which
bacteria are helpful and which are not, and the results are currently inconclusive.

Because many probiotics are sold as dietary supplements, manufacturers are not allowed to make claims about specific health benefits under FDA law. 

They must ensure the products are safe to consume, but there is no promise that the bacteria listed on the label will effectively treat the gut health concerns you are taking them for. Your best bet to maximize potential benefits is to ask your doctor what probiotics might be right for you.

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