Is exposure to sunlight beneficial for human ?


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Sunlight has detrimental effects on the skin but human beings cannot survive without sunlight. Sunlight exposure is beneficial for human beings in different ways. It has the ability to boost body blood circulation, absorb vitamin D from skin cells, and regulate other vitamins and minerals (Balci & Nuhoğlu 2009, p. 474). The active form of vitamin D3 is responsible for the mineral metabolism, neuromuscular nerve conduction, enhancement of the immune system, and calcium bone adsorption. Vitamin D is generally formed by UVB action that converts Vitamin D3 into an active form of 7-dehydrocholesterol and transported to the liver (3). The liver combines the vitamin –D with protein binding in the blood, which is further transported to the kidney to form 1, 25-dihydroxy-vitamin D, the active form. The active 1,25-dihydroxy vitamin D plays an important role in bone ossification. Vitamin D is important because it regulates two important minerals in the body – calcium and phosphorus that affects bone formation.  Inadequacy of Vitamin D in the body leads to rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults. Recent studies have found out that in many postmenopausal cases, Vitamin D is one of the major cause of osteoporosis (Health Canada Vitamin D and Calcium 2006, p. 48). In addition, Vitamin D is also postulated to have effects on the immune system.  It plays a role in mitigating influence. For example, lack of vitamin D during cold season leads to higher rates of influenza because of lack of sunlight to synthesize the vitamin (Cannell & vieth, 2006, p. 1129).  Vitamin D has been in trial since 2011 in a number of clinical trials to see its effect on the immune system. The vitamin has also been linked to HIV/Aids.  However, there is no conclusive studies that link the vitamin to asthma and hence supplementation of Vitamin D in asthmatic cases is not recommended.