As the mercury continues to rise in the UAE, non-profit Friends of Cancer Patients (FOCP), took the opportunity for a timely discussion on ways to prevent skin cancer and maintain skin health. Held earlier this week and titled ‘Protection from skin cancer’, the webinar was led by Dr. Hassan Galadari, Consultant Dermatologist, and Dr. Walaa Abdelfattah, Specialist Dermatologist.
They translated their clinical expertise to six must-follow tips during summer, which can easily be adopted and practiced by people across age groups to keep skin cancer and other skin-related problems at bay.
Precautions to be taken while outdoors
The experts stressed the importance of following a set of precautions when out in the sun to protect the skin from ultraviolet rays, the most important of which is to avoid going outdoors between 10 am and 4 pm in summer. While going out, a person should wear a hat, sunglasses, and long-sleeved dress in addition to using sunscreen lotion conforming to SPF 50 rating on the exposed parts, to protect themselves from direct sunlight.
A healthy diet for healthy skin
The speakers highlighted the importance of a healthy and balanced diet for healthy skin. They recommended nutritional meals that take into account the calories consumed to maintain a healthy weight. Consumption of foods with excess of fat, salt, sugar, and other ingredients that might impact the body negatively must be curtailed. They advised maintaining a healthy lifestyle which would ensure a healthy body.
Foods rich in Vitamin A and Zinc
The doctors pointed out that many skin diseases are caused by malnutrition. For instance, Vitamin A deficiency causes dry skin and eyes, delayed wound healing, and acne. Likewise, Zinc deficiency leads to many diseases, including Atopic dermatitis (eczema), rashes, and psoriasis, among others.
Drinking a sufficient quantity of water at regular intervals keeps the skin moist and elastic and helps in the treatment of dark circles around the eyes, the dermatologists advised. Regular intake of water also protects the skin from sunburn during summer.
Vitamin C for skin
The skin specialists emphasized the importance of Vitamin C in the production of collagen in the body which maintains the elasticity of the skin and prevents skin damage caused by direct sunlight and ultraviolet rays. It also helps maintain antioxidant levels in the body and prevents wrinkles.
Concluding the session, the experts advised consuming organic foods that are high in antioxidants due to the lack of chemicals in them. Organic food also plays a pivotal role in strengthening the immune system and prevents many diseases, including cancers and allergies.
‘Protection from skin cancer’ was held in collaboration with; Galadari Derma Clinic, Dubai; Ishaq Bin Omran Medical Center; Supreme Council for Family Affairs; and Sharjah Health Promotion Department. It drew the participation of over 100 attendees from various Sharjah Government entities including inmates of the Sharjah Central Jail.
FOCP will organize a series of such virtual discussions every month this year as part of its commitment to raising awareness of the importance of early detection of cancer as well as dispelling myths surrounding the disease. The sessions, broadcast on WEBEX platform, will bring together a host of experts and specialists to throw light on the several types of cancers and how to prevent them.