Skin cancer is a very real danger in America, with 1 in 5 Americans developing it during the course of their lifetime. We do everything we can to protect ourselves against skin cancer. We wear sunscreen religiously, cover ourselves up when we’re out in the hot sun and avoid tanning beds like the plague. But there’s one habit that is strangely connected to a higher risk for skin cancer. Do you often succumb to late-night food cravings? You know it’s bad for your weight, but late-night snacking could be even more dangerous than that. Researchers have found that late-night snacking can actually lead to skin cancer. Sounds crazy? They have scientific proof to back it up.
Why Snacking Can Lead To Skin Cancer
The Department of Neuroscience at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas conducted an experiment where they fed rats at abnormal times. For humans, normal food timings are during the day, but for
Our skin has a natural circadian rhythm which is based on our regular eating and sleeping patterns. In order to protect itself from the damaging UV rays of the sun, our skin secretes enzymes that can shield it to some extent from damage. However, these enzymes are produced only when they skin’s circadian rhythm is balanced. Late-night snacking puts your circadian rhythm out of whack because it’s abnormal. In the group of mice that were fed at abnormal times, their skin’s ability to produce this protective enzyme was seriously diminished. This meant that when they were exposed to UV rays, their skin wasn’t able to protect
Can This Study Be Applied To Humans?
Human studies have not been conducted as yet, but scientists are fairly confident that humans would react the same way. The most concerning revelation of this study is that late-night snacking can have immediate effects. If you’re up late eating one night and you go sun bathing the next day, you’re likely to face serious sun damage. Sun damage is often a cumulative effect, but late-night snacking could accelerate it. Late-night snacking is unhealthy on all fronts, so it’s probably time you broke that habit. Sticking to normal food timings and eating nutritious food won’t just improve your health from the inside, but it might also protect you from skin cancer.
Foods That Protect You From Skin Cancer
While snacking can increase your chances of
So if you want to be smart about sun protection, it’s not all just about slathering on sunscreen.