Q. Instead of sunscreen, I take megadoses of vitamin C, which has protected me for over 20 years against sunburn. (Of course, I don’t tan or freckle either.) I take 3 grams of C each day, and once every year or two I might get a little pink on the most sensitive areas (tip of my nose, neck and shoulders early in the summer); otherwise, the C protects me against the radiation of the sun.
A. There is some data to suggest that vitamin C may have some modest effects against ultraviolet radiation. A study published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology (Feb. 2005) even demonstrated that a combination of antioxidants like vitamin C and E could reduce DNA damage caused by sun exposure.
Do not assume, however, that taking oral vitamins can protect you against harm from the sun’s rays. We would encourage you to stay out of the midday sun and also use sun blockers that contain titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.

Join Over 55,000 Subscribers at The People's Pharmacy

Each week we send two free email newsletters with breaking health news, prescription drug information, home remedies and a preview of our award-winning radio show. Join our mailing list and get the information you need to make confident choices about your health.

What Do You Think?

Share your thoughts with others, but be mindful of protecting your own and others' privacy. Not all comments will be posted. Advice from web visitors is not a substitute for medical attention. Do not stop any medicine without checking with the prescriber. In posting a comment, you agree to our commenting policy and website terms and conditions.