Ultraviolet Light; the Untold Story

I am constantly receiving e-mails from mold patients who tell me success stories of how they cured toxic symptoms such as horrific skin problems due to mold, particularly aspergillus, by rubbing baking soda on their skin when they bathe and exposing themselves to sunlight in moderation on a daily basis.  They stated that their skin felt like a pin prickly sensation at first when exposed to the sun, but after some time the discomfort ceased and they were able to expose themselves to full sunlight for longer periods of time.  After 1 to 3 months, they claimed they felt almost 100% better.

Others have told me tales of attaching UV light filters to their HVAC systems.  They tell me they paid about $200 to $400 for these systems and once properly installed, they claim they feel "instant relief."  They even tell me it has helped some of their furniture that was once contaminated some time ago.

UVB therapy actually consists of a technician removing a small portion of a patient's blood and running it under UV lights, then replacing it.  I remember one of these patients called me right after a UVB treatment from her cell phone on her way home one day, rejoicing, "I feel WONDERFUL!"  I wondered from that day what it would be like to receive UV filtered blood.

And lastly some have even told me that they have sprayed down their mold contaminated goods with hydrogen peroxide, kept them in a garage under UV lights and after several weeks, turned those goods in every possible direction so they would be thoroughly exposed to the UV light, then after about 2 months, they set those same items under the sun for about 2 to 3 weeks.  I know of people that were extremely hypersensitized who have done this and actually put their face against those items and I couldn't believe it, no reaction!

We all know that hospitals use UV lights in their surgery rooms as germicidal lamps.  When I lived in Asia I noticed UV lighting throughout many buildings.  Do they know something we don't?  The UV light didn't seem to help during the SARS epidemic.  Maybe they don't.

As the days get longer and warmer our venture into the sunlight increases. Every year the confusion begins, again... Before leaving your indoors, those sun glasses best be put on and that exposed skin be protected with sun blocker lotion. Also, when you go outdoors, you need to wear a long-sleeved shirt, long pants and a wide-brimmed hat. Is sunlight truly this harmful, does it significantly threaten us with skin diseases? Considering the many media reports surrounding the sun's possible danger to our skin, another perspective may be in order...

Electromagnetic radiation comes in many forms. The most familiar is visible light. Other forms include x-rays, ultraviolet (UV), infrared, microwave and radio waves. Daylight consists of direct solar radiation, diffused radiation from the sky (sky shine) and wavelengths reflected from surroundings, such as buildings, etc. Generally a great deal of ultraviolet radiation is absorbed by the water vapor of the atmosphere and even more by smoke and dust particles. From October to February, above the central North American latitudes, the ultraviolet content of sunshine is at its lowest.

Surprisingly, there is a relatively higher amount of ultraviolet in the sky shine than in direct sunshine. The ocean, sandy beaches and snow can furnish a diffuse and, at times, a very powerful form of sunlight. The large amount of ultraviolet in sky shine accounts for the fact that it is possible to get sunburned on a beach on a cloudy day when there is no direct radiation from the sun. The reflection of ultraviolet from the surface of water is twice as great as from a field of grass, but only one-fourth as much as from freshly fallen snow. Ordinary window glass in our homes, offices and automobiles prevents the passage of most ultraviolet rays. A person would have to sit at a place indoors where the ambient illumination is at least 20-foot candles for at least twenty hours to get as much ultraviolet radiation as he would get in two minutes outdoors in sunlight at noon.

Let there be light in the biblical term no doubt meant both visual and non-visual light. Of the radiation striking the earth, approximately 50% has a visible wavelength of 400 and 700 nanometers. A nanometer (nm) is the standard measurement used to express wavelength of light. It is equivalent to one billionth of a meter in length. Although such visual color exposure (violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red) are only a fraction of all wavelengths known to mankind, color combinations and blends of hue in this visual range can exceed 100 million. There continues to be controversy over the non-visual ultraviolet (100 to 400 nm) frequencies which equal 10%, and infrared (over 700 nm) wavelengths which are 40% of all radiation reaching earth. Of course, the fact remains that without ultraviolet and infrared our world would not be the same. Infrared provides us with the required heat that keeps us warm. Ultraviolet provides us with the ability to fight off germs in the air (UVC), creates skin pigmentation as a natural protector (UVB) and helps in our vitamin and mineral absorption capabilities (UVA). UVC are the shortest ultraviolet rays and virtually all of these frequencies are absorbed by our atmosphere and the ozone layer. The remaining UV light that reaches the ground is about 10% UVB and 90% UVA at midday.

Heliopolis, a Greek city was famous for its sunlight healing temples. Herodotus, the father of heliotherapy wrote: exposure to the sun is highly necessary in persons whose health needs restoring. In winter, spring and autumn, the patient should permit the rays of the sun to strike full upon him; but in summer, because of the excessive heat, this method should be used in moderation. Downes and Blunt, in 1877, discovered the dramatic ability of sunlight to destroy and provide for an effective means of treating bacterial infections. Another famous practitioner of sun therapy was Auguste Rollier MD, whose clinic was at 5,000 feet above sea level. Dr. Rollier stated that his patients would get the best results if they received the highest amount of ultraviolet light at this altitude. Ultraviolet intensity increases 4% to 5% every 1000 feet ascended. He apparently substantiated incredible results, which were published in his book La Cure de Soleil / Curing with the Sun.

Mild, sensible exposure to sunlight is not only safe, it is desirable, noted by Dr. John Ott, the pioneer of modern day photobiology, and author of Health and Light; Life on Earth evolved under natural sunlight and has existed for quite some time under the full (visual and non-visual) spectrum of light that it contains. Many prehistoric tribes and even entire civilizations worshiped the sun for its healing powers, using its light to treat physical and mental problems, a practice known as heliotherapy. There is no question that UV light in large amounts are harmful; however, in trace amounts, as in moderate amounts of natural sunlight, it acts, according to Ott, as a life-supporting nutrient that is highly beneficial.

Is it possible that science has gone too far? According to Ott, This may be one of the biggest blunders science has made in the last fifty years.

As stated in Dr. Jacob Liberman's book, Light, Medicine of the Future; In summary, these findings, along with those of many other highly respected scientists and physicians, seem to indicate that the human body is truly a living photocell that is energized by the sun's light, the nutrient of humankind. Dr. Liberman further exclaims, Moderation is the key. Mild, sensible exposure to sunlight is not only safe, it is desirable. There are people all over the world who live at high altitudes or at the equator, where levels of ultraviolet light are high, yet they are virtually free of all types of cancer. It seems that other factors such as nutrition, lifestyle, and so on, need to be evaluated. Now, according to new guidelines from the American Cancer Society, healthy habits, such as good nutrition and avoidance of smoking, may greatly decrease your odds of getting skin cancer. Are the western medicine folks really starting to agree with the aforementioned statements substantiating sunlight? Not necessarily.

Modern scientific medical research claims that sunlight, especially ultraviolet rays, are and continue to be hazardous to your general health. Major financial interests have made this controversy even more obscure.

Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer

According to the editor D. Joseph Demis, MD, PhD in the publication, Clinical Dermatology, Vol. 4; It is likely that UV light has a direct effect on the epidermis as well as the dermis. A notable effect of irradiation is the development of impending cellular death. The direct damage to membranes, premature aging and skin wrinkle, according to this publication, has been thought to be due to absorption of ultraviolet light. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer. The National Cancer Institute has estimated an annual incidence of 400,000 cases of BCC in the United States alone. the statement continues, Ultraviolet radiation and chronic sun exposure is an important factor in the development of BCC. About 95% of the UVB incident on human skin is absorbed, but only 10% to 20% penetrates beyond the epidermis. The amount of UVA dosage for redness in the skin is 600 to 1000 times that of UVB. Although UVB is implicated in much of the connective tissue damage, shorter UVA in the 320 to 340 nm range is probably responsible for the bulk of UVA -induced photodamage.

The dichotomy continues. Niels Finsen, in 1903, won the Nobel Prize for successfully treating skin tuberculosis with the ultraviolet portion of light. On August 7, 1982 a British medical journal, called The Lancet, gave an interesting report on relationship between skin cancer and the sun. Researches found that the people who had the lowest risk of developing skin cancer were those whose main daily activity was outdoors. It was found that the incidence of malignant melanomas was considerably higher in office workers. Might this indoor phenomena be the cause of the continued rise in skin cancer death rates? The incidence of malignant melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, has increased 1,800 percent since 1930, and melanoma mortality rose 34 percent between 1973 and 1992, which has been documented by the Skin Cancer Foundation. Yet, outdoor activity without sufficient sun protection remains as the main concern of the Skin Cancer Foundation and dermatologists. Interestingly enough in 1928, the world's first commercial use of a sunscreen, an emulsion of benzyl salicylate and benzyl cinnamate, was reported in the United States.

But wait, still more information from the book Sunlight by Zane Kime MD shows beneficial results with moderate exposure to ultraviolet frequencies. Noted in Dr. Kime's book single exposures of a large area of the body to ultraviolet light were found to dramatically lower elevated blood pressure (up to a 40 mm Hg drop), lowered abnormally high blood sugars as found in diabetics, to decrease cholesterol in the bloodstream, and to increase the white blood cells, particularly the lymphocytes which are largely responsible for the body's ability to resist disease. The author became increasingly convinced, as he studied the available research data, that the highly refined western diet plays a leading role, both in the aging process and in the development of skin cancer, and that sunlight seems only to accelerate the problem.

What about your normal inside lighting environment, how does it stack up to natural outdoor lighting and UV exposure? Generally, the illumination of indoor light bulbs are dedicated to the yellow-green portions of the visual spectrum. Incandescent lamps emit these colors due to heating of the element in the bulb. Fluorescent tubes emit these yellowish frequencies due to their single phosphor manufacturing techniques. New product development has allowed for lighting to incorporate a greater spectrum of the visual frequencies with the blending of the three primary radiant colors, red, blue and green. The output of these newer, full-spectrum lamps provides for a more uniform, balanced, natural blue-white illumination. All recently manufactured incandescent bulbs (excluding halogen types) and fluorescent lights are virtually nonexistent in ultraviolet radiation exposure at a distance greater than a couple feet.

What is the bottom line with your next resolve to go out into the light of day? Consider this from Electrotherapy and Light Therapy by Richard Kovac MD. Overexposure to sunlight may cause varying degrees of sunstroke, heat stroke or sunburns and such symptoms as headache, undue fatigue or irritability. Properly applied on the other hand, sunshine and open air will act as a powerful tonic, increasing general powers of resistance and promoting mental and physical development. For this reason the duration and extent of exposure to sunshine should be carefully graduated and those who do not pigment efficiently or easily should be warned to be especially careful...

Maybe we should do some research into more natural methods into healing.  I do feel that it is possible that it may be more than a coincidence why so many people are raving about the sun these days.

For ordering information, see UV Treatment.

This site is not intended to give medical advice.  Seek the advice of a professional for medication, treatment options, and complete knowledge of any symptoms or illness.  The opinions expressed here are exclusively my personal opinions do not necessarily reflect my peers or professional affiliates. The information here does not reflect professional advice and is not intended to supercede the professional advice of others.

 2001-2004 Mold-Help All rights reserved.