Can Any of These Things Really Replace Sunscreen?
the MPR take:
Can sunscreen pills, drinkable sunscreen, diet, wearable devices, and smartphone apps replace sunscreen for skin protection? Henry W. Lim, MD, FAAD, CS, of the American Academy of Dermatology, evaluates some of the products on the market that claim to offer benefits in skincare beyond sunscreen. Sunscreen pills often contain Polypodium leucotomos, an extract of a Central American fern plant, which in studies has been shown to increase the time it takes for skin to burn when exposed to UV light. However, these pills have been found in other studies to have an equivalency to only an SPF of 3–5. No current research supports the claims made by drinkable sunscreen in preventing sun burns and the role of diet on sun protection is unknown. Bracelets and apps that monitor sun and UV exposure may increase awareness about sun protection, but the reliability is questionable. None of these products can be considered a replacement for sunscreen, so applying (and reapplying) sunscreen is still best for sun protection.
From lotions to sprays to sticks, consumers already have a myriad of options to choose from when selecting a sunscreen. Now, several additional sun protection tools have become available, including sunscreen pills, drinkable sunscreen, and ultraviolet (UV) monitoring bracelets. To help consumers make smart decisions when protecting their skin from the sun, board-certified dermatologist Henry W...
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