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Are Tanning Pills Healthy?

Most tanning pills on the market today can be split into two different types, each with their own unique characteristics and each providing secondary health benefits to aiding the tanning process.

The active ingredients in tanning pills are vitamins and minerals, and many of these act as potent antioxidants in the body. Antioxidants are molecules that prevent oxidation in the body, which is a process associated with ageing and disease. Many people who take tanning tablets to enhance a tan while in the sun may be unaware that UV light can cause oxidative stress on the body, and that making antioxidants available to the body may help protect the skin by building up its own natural defences.

A 1998 study1 concluded that combined vitamins C and E were shown to reduce the sunburn reaction which could indicate a lower risk of UV induced skin damage (both of these vitamins are included in certain tanning tablets together). Vitamins C and E are also essential for the production of collagen, which helps keep skin healthy and young.

The main ingredient in sunless tanning pills such as MyTan Bronze is beta-carotene, also known as pro-vitamin A. When taken in sufficient quantities, the body stores the excess beta-carotene under the skin, producing the bronze skintone as desired. When required, the body converts beta-carotene into retinol, more commonly known as vitamin A, which is required for healthy skin, immune system and good eye health and vision.

One of active ingredients in tanning pills that helps boost your tan is the amino acid tyrosine (more correctly known as L-tyrosine). Tyrosine is a pigment-producing agent in the skin and also has other benefits as it is also used in the production of neurotransmitters in the brain. Some researchers have shown that dietary tyrosine improves and reduces decline in mental, cognitive and psychomotor performance while under stress2, suggesting it may have a protective effect on the brain for people with demanding or stressful lifestyles. You can find a good supply of L-tyrosine in MyTan Boost.

Tanning tablets that help with the tanning process such as MyTan Boost, also contain many of the B-complex family of vitamins, one of the most notable being folic acid. Folic acid deficiency has been shown to have the same damaging effect on our DNA as exposure to radiation! It is also directly related to the ageing process and ensuring you have sufficient daily amounts of folic acid is directly linked to slowing down degeneration due to ageing3.

Vitamin D, found in MyTan Boost, has recently received a lot of interest due to new findings. Vitamin D is often classified as a hormone that controls the expression of over 1,000 genes in the body, and as a result of this, ample vitamin D levels have been directly linked to the slowing of the ageing process within the body.

PABA or para-aminobenzoic acid is another ingredient involved in pigmentation of the skin and contained in many sunless tan pills. While there are very few studies on PABA deficiency in humans, many claims have been made on the benefit of supplementing with PABA such as relieving fatigue, irritability, depression, weeping eczema (moist eczema), scleroderma (premature hardening of skin), patchy pigment loss in skin (vitiligo), and reversing premature grey hair.

In summary, tanning pills provide excellent multivitamin and mineral supplementation in amounts that are significant enough to provide secondary benefits to health, allowing you to not only look your best but also feel great from the inside out!

1http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9448204
2http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1863555/
3http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21793842

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Are Tanning Pills Safe to Take?

One of the most common questions we receive is about tanning tablets and safety. People are very enthusiastic about getting nutritional support for their suntan but, of course, the prospect of taking tanning tablets raises natural concerns. Is there going to be side effects? Are they going to damage my health? We want to take the time to explain a little bit of the history of tanning pills in getting this reputation and hopefully dispel some myths.

Are Tanning Tablets Safe?

Through the 1990s, tan pills earned a bad reputation and rightfully so. The main ingredient was a substance called canthaxanthin, a powerful colouring agent. It was originally used in small amounts as a food colouring and in fish food, added to encourage stronger colours for the likes of trout or salmon. People began consuming sun tan tablets containing canthaxanthin and it was quickly discovered that there were some unwanted side effects. As well as causing a golden orange tint in the skin, the colour could deposit in the whites of the eyes, with further potentially harmful eye complications. On top of that there were reports of liver difficulties from some individuals but it is safe to say that canthaxanthin is bad news.

At MyTan, our background and our passion is in healthy living and our goal is not just to provide truly effective products but to help improve people’s health while doing so. This meant that canthaxanthin was always off the table from day one. With our experience in the industry and after extensive research we’ve come upon alternatives that are well known to have no harmful side effects. Not just that but there are certain nutrients that have clearly demonstrated proven health advantages. The prospect of a tan pill that would would give a colour without the sun, while encouraging health instead of damaging it was our holy grail and that is what we went on to develop in MyTan Bronze.

We arrived at a special blend of 5 different carotenoids, each extracted from algae that manufacturers the pigments from sunlight. These nutrients have effects that could be of huge interest to anyone, particular those exposed to the sun. One of the carotenoids included, beta carotene, has been shown in studies to assist eye health and to have a beneficial effect on the immune system. On top of this, beta carotene is known to be a potent antioxidant, which may help slow cellular aging by mopping up damaging ‘free radical’ molecules. In fact, people all over the world have long taken beta carotene solely to protect their health and protect against the ageing process. This makes beta carotene a perfect candidate for our product, but there’s more. Instead of simply taking beta carotene, we want to achieve an optimum colour balance in the final formula of the product. That’s why four additional pigments, each known to be completely harmless and to offer potential health benefits. The main effect of each of these carotenoids is that they are stored in the skin, not unlike how a plant would store its colour, and impart a healthy, golden bronze glow.

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