November 17th, 2010
By: Jonathan Benson
Russian health authorities recently demonstrated that they hold a much different opinion on the safety and effectiveness of tanning beds than do American health authorities. According to a recent BBC report, a Russian prison will soon be outfitted with various health-promoting amenities, including tanning beds, which officials say will help revamp the nation’s reputation for having poor quality prison facilities.
“We are developing additional medical services … and even sunbeds will be put in place,” explained Sergei Telyatnikov, the head of Moscow’s Butyrka remand prison, to a local Moscow radio station. Russian officials say the tanning beds will help improve prisoner health.
American and European medical officials have largely taken the offensive against tanning beds, warning the public that they supposedly cause skin cancer. But contradictory research continues to show that when used properly, tanning beds actually exhibit an anti-cancer effect on the body, as they expose it to vitamin D-creating ultraviolet (UV) rays just like those given off naturally by the sun.
So while many Americans continue to run and hide from the sun and tanning beds out of fear of getting skin cancer, Russian prisoners will be getting their daily dose of healthy vitamin D through the regular use of tanning beds. In fact, using tanning beds safely actually helps to prevent skin cancers.
“The benefits are that tanning can normalize vitamin D levels, and normal vitamin D levels reduce your risk of all cancers, including melanoma,” explain James Dowd and Diane Stafford in their book, The Vitamin D Cure. “Judicious use of artificial UV light is used to treat some skin diseases, and it can help prevent sunburns.”