Main Menu
Join Undercurrent on Facebook

The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975 | |
For Divers since 1975
The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975
"Best of the Web: scuba tips no other
source dares to publish" -- Forbes
June 1998 Vol. 13, No. 6   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
What's this?

Worried About That Tropical Sun?

from the June, 1998 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

Worried about getting skin cancer? Forget the French fries, and maybe even the sunscreen. A new study found no evidence that sun lotions do anything but prevent sunburn.

Many dermatologists rejected the conclusion, but the author of the study, epidemiologist Dr. Marianne Berwick of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, said that her own study of 1,200 people in Connecticut and a review of nine other studies suggest sunscreens just don't do much about cancer one way or another. But using sunscreens "probably can't hurt."

Her advice: "If you are high risk, stay out of the sun." People at the greatest risk for skin cancer are those with the lightest skin, hair, and eyes. Those who also have a large number of moles have an even greater risk of melanoma. If found when it is restricted to one spot, usually an irregular mole, melanoma is highly curable, but treatment is much less successful if it has spread to other organs. It may take 20 years or more after sun exposure for melanoma to develop.

Several dermatologists strongly disagreed with Berwick. "Until there is proof that sunscreens are ineffective, it would be irresponsible to discontinue recommendations about using sunscreens," said Dr. Darrell Rigel of New York University.

At a meeting of dermatologists in March, Dr. Harvey Arbesman, professor of dermatology at the University of Buffalo, said that "people who sunburn easily and people who are out in the sun a lot should be especially conscious of diet." One million new skin cancers are diagnosed each year, and 96 percent could be influenced by proper diet, researchers said.

At-risk patients and those already diagnosed with skin cancer should lower their fat intake and consume food with more antioxidants: beta carotene, found in carrots, broccoli, and spinach; selenium, found in whole wheat flour, mushrooms, and tuna; and vitamin C, found in red and green peppers, oranges, and cranberries.

Arbesman said that dermatologists have been slow to recognize the importance of diet despite some 50 studies linking diet and cancer.

I want to get all the stories! Tell me how I can become an Undercurrent Online Member and get online access to all the articles of Undercurrent as well as thousands of first hand reports on dive operations world-wide

Find in  

| Home | Online Members Area | My Account | Login | Join |
| Travel Index | Dive Resort & Liveaboard Reviews | Featured Reports | Recent Issues | Back Issues |
| Dive Gear Index | Health/Safety Index | Environment & Misc. Index | Seasonal Planner | Blogs | Free Articles | Book Picks | News |
| Special Offers | RSS | FAQ | About Us | Contact Us | Links |

Copyright © 1996-2023 Undercurrent (
3020 Bridgeway, Ste 102, Sausalito, Ca 94965
All rights reserved.