In my personal definition of healthy living, I not only try to eat well and exercise, but I do my best to be healthy in all aspects of my life. I don’t drink to excess (very often, anyways), I don’t smoke, and I try to take care of my skin.
So while I was chugging away on the treadmill and watching CTV news this morning, a particular segment caught my eye.
As of this past Monday, Oakville (just outside of Toronto) has become to first municipality in Ontario to ban anyone under 18 from using tanning beds, except when prescribed by a medical professional. It was decided by a unanimous vote. A similar ban is in place in Newfoundland/Labrador, Nova Scotia and British Columbia, while other Ontario municipalities (including Missassauga, St. Thomas and Kingston) are currently considering similar bans, with encouragement from the health unit and advocacy groups such as the Canadian Cancer Society.
How did I feel upon seeing this news?
About two years ago, I noticed a mole that I’ve had for my entire life was starting to look different. It had gotten bigger and the border had become jagged and discoloured – two clear red flags. I made an appointment with my doctor and had a biopsy done.
Fortunately for me, the results came back negative.
Even with my good news, going through the process of getting a biopsy and all the “what-ifs” that go along with it definitely freaked me out. I always wear sunscreen and I’ve never been anywhere near a tanning booth. After that scare, I become even more vigilant with my skin-protecting habits.
And any of my friends/family members that tell me that they’re going to/have been to a tanning salon? They get lectured. Like mad.
Why should you avoid tanning beds? People that use tanning beds are 74% more likely to develop melanoma than non-tanning bed users. That alone should scare people off from using them – let alone the fact that it causes cell damage, premature aging, and the possibility of looking like that creepy New Jersey mom.
Currently, there’s a private members bill in Ontario (Bill 74 – the Skin Care Prevention Act) that calls for the banning of youths under 18 from tanning beds in all of Ontario. Of course, I am showing full support for this bill (you can visit http://www.takeaction.cancer.ca for more info) and hoping that it goes through. I remember in high school tanning was the “in” thing – I’m afraid to know how many years (or lifetime)-long habits that were formed at this time. If we can break the cycle at a young age, hopefully people will be smarter about the repercussions when they’re legally able to do so.
One of the faces behind the bill is a woman named Kate Neale, who started tanning at 16 and has now been diagnosed with malignant melanoma. She’s now 22 – the same age as me. I cannot imagine how it must feel to be at this age and be told you have a potentially deadly form of cancer. She’s had to undergo 8 different mole removals (including one leaving a 15 cm scar on her stomach) and has a 90% chance of the cancer reoccurring. That’s absolutely awful.
I guess my main takeaway here – don’t tan. I don’t care if you’re 16 or 60, it’s not worth it. If you absolutely must have a tan, buy it in a can – your skin will thank you.
And back to my day…
My stomach was in the mood for more breakfast. Aka: STUFT Mama’s Pumpkin Protein Cookie Dough.
I use a full scoop of protein powder instead of the PB2, and I topped it with granola and cocoa roasted almonds. I usually try to get a good portion of veggies in with lunch – but pumpkin counts, right? 🙂
New recipe for you tonight!
It felt like a good night for burgers, but I didn’t have any ground meat around. I did, however, have canned salmon. So, salmon burgers it is.
Lemon-Cilantro Salmon Burgers
Serves 4. Inspired by this recipe.
- 1 can Pacific salmon, drained
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
- 2 green onions, sliced thinly
- about 1/3 red or yellow bell pepper, chopped finely
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- about 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking pan with tin foil, spray with cooking spray and set aside.
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix until well incorporated.
- Put a dividing line down the centre of the bowl, creating two halves. Create another line lengthwise, cutting the mixture into 4 equal parts (Thank you, Rachael Ray).
- Scoop mixture one section at a time, forming into patties and placing on the pan.
- Cook for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Whoever invented panko bread crumbs is a genius. An absolute genius. These burgers had such an awesome crisp to them! It was the texture I’d expect from burgers that had been pan fried in a good layer of oil. Amazing.
If your not a fan of cilantro (craziness – I could eat that stuff in anything), chopped dill would also be amazing here!
I had mine on a slice of whole wheat toast with a dollop of tzatziki on top.
I’ve realized that tzatziki actually makes a good, healthy substitute for tartar sauce. The taste isn’t exact, but the texture is similar and the garlicky flavour pairs well with fish and seafood.
I had a salad on the side – mixed greens, cucumber, green onion, bell pepper, goat cheese and balsamic dressing.
(I’m playing around with my camera a lot right now, can you tell?)
Considering that I’m running on about 5 hours of sleep right now, an early bedtime is definitely in the cards for this eight-hours-of-sleep-or-I’m-a-zombie type of girl.
<– What are your thoughts on tanning salons? Should they be regulated? Should teens be banned? Should the salons be outlawed altogether? Do you live somewhere where there’s an age limit on tanning? I’m curious to hear thoughts on the issue.