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Edible Sunscreen

posted: 01/11/2001
by Brian Rosa

Even though your spring ski trip is weeks away, it may not be too early to start protecting yourself from the sun. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutritionfound that taking supplements of beta-carotene and vitamin E for at least six weeks prior to sunlight exposure helps protect the skin against sunburn. But don't toss the Coppertone just yet. With effects equivalent to an SPF of only 2 to 3, "the supplementation will provide protection under 'normal' conditions," explains study author Wilhelm Stahl, Ph.D. of the University of Düsseldorf. And skiing, we know, is not normal. "Upon extreme exposure -- skiing at quite high altitude, for example -- additional protection is needed," says Stahl. So you still need to slather on the sunscreen.

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