The American Cancer Society, partnering with sunscreen maker Neutrogena, has decided to take a shock-and-fear approach in their latest cancer prevention campaign.

In the ad, a young woman holds a photograph of a smiling blonde, with the accompanying headline, "My sister accidentally killed herself. She died of skin cancer." It warns readers that "left unchecked, skin cancer can be fatal," and to "use sunscreens, cover up and watch for skin changes."

Some public-health doctors are responding with sharp criticism, pointing out there is no clear evidence supporting the link between sun exposure and death from skin cancer.
According to Dr. Barry Kramer, associate director for disease prevention at the National Institutes of Health, "There's very little evidence that sunscreens protect you against melanoma, yet you often hear that as the dominant message."

Dr. Lisa Schwartz added, in reference to Neutrogena's financial support of the campaign, "When people see an American Cancer Society PSA they expect it to reflect the best evidence. We don't want people who have a financial interest to be telling you the benefit of doing something."

The New York Times July 10, 2007

Dr. Mercola's comment:

Here we have yet another MAJOR scam or complete lack of understanding about the true cause of disease which results in massive misinformation that confuses people and worsens their health by depriving them of one of the most important vitamins known to man.

The American Cancer Society has once again continued to promote fantasy rather than facts in their latest anti-sun ad campaign. The link between sun exposure and skin cancer is vastly overblown, and there is little, if any, evidence that sunscreens actually protect you against melanoma.

In addition to that, skin cancer is rarely life-threatening. It represents only 2 percent of all cancer deaths. Most skin cancer deaths are from melanoma, which in turn makes up only 6 percent of all skin-cancer cases.

It's even been shown that people who had lots of sun exposure prior to their diagnosis of melanoma had much higher survival rates than those with limited prior sun exposure.

It's not hard to see why these ads are being shown, considering that they are being funded by sunscreen maker Neutrogena (something that goes unmentioned in the ads themselves), which stands to benefit financially from the message.

But if the sun is not the main cause behind the deadly form of melanoma, what is?

The answer is: it's your omega 6:3 oil ratio. To quote from the journal Cancer Research: "Epidemiological, experimental, and mechanistic data implicate omega-6 fat as stimulators and long-chain omega-3 fats as inhibitors of development and progression of a range of human cancers, including melanoma."

In 2001, the prestigious National Academy of Sciences published a comprehensive review showing that the omega 6:3 ratio was the key to preventing skin cancer development. And an Australian study done about 15 years ago showed a 40 percent reduction in melanoma for those who ate omega-3 rich fish.

Do exercise caution when in the sun; sunburns can be dangerous. At the beginning of the season go out gradually, perhaps as little as ten minutes a day. Progressively increase your time in the sun so that in a few weeks, you will be able to have normal sun exposure with little risk of skin cancer. Just remember never to get burned, which is the key to safe sun exposure.

Remember also never to use sunscreen, as the chemicals in products are themselves a potential cause of cancer. Instead, creatively use your clothing to block the sun's rays during your build-up time.

Related Articles:

Learn Why the Myth of the Sun Causing Skin Cancer Can Hurt Your Health

Discovering the Truth Behind the Sunshine/Skin Cancer Myth

Sunscreens Don't Provide the Protection They Claim