It's summertime—which means it's time for beach parties and sunbathing! Everyone enjoys the heat of summer and feelings of lying under the sun. Meanwhile, it's also time to fill up your drawers with bottles of sunscreen. During the hot months of summer, your skin is more exposed to ultraviolet rays than any other times of the year, so you'll need more protection for your skin. Here are three vitamins for summer that can help prevent damage from the sun and ways to get those goodie vitamins.

Vitamin A

vegetable, pasture, carrot, farmer's market
Caroline Ingalls

Vitamin A is most commonly found in vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, and dark green leafy vegetables like kale. It plays a significant role in healthy vision, cell growth, and the immune system, but it can also help repair skin damage from the sun. According to researchers, vitamin A (aka retinol) can help protect us from melanomas, which are the most dangerous form of skin cancer. By taking in this vitamin daily, your skin will become more tolerable to the ultraviolet rays that it is being exposed to daily. 

Vitamin C

juice, citrus, sweet, tangerine, lemon, grapefruit
Marlee Goldman

This vitamin is probably the first that pops into mind when you hear "vitamins for summer" since it is commonly found in many fruits such as oranges, grapefruits, tomatoes, and berries. Vitamin C is a vital molecule for skin health. It contains ascorbic acid, which helps make your sweat glands function. It can also help protect the skin from external stressors, such as the sun, and it will stimulate collagen synthesis, thereby preventing UV-induced photodamage. In addition, it is also considered to be an antioxidant, and it naturally makes your skin stronger—so your skin gets less damaged when it's exposed to different environments.

Vitamin C is also a natural histamine and immune system booster. This means that if you suffer from allergies frequently during the summer, taking vitamin C will help curb your symptoms and make you feel better!

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is mainly found in nuts, tofu, beef, lean pork, lamb, and oily fish. It is considered to be an anti-inflammatory agent in our skin. Studies have shown that it prevents inflammatory damage to the skin after sun exposure—minimizing skin swelling, skin thickness, and other symptoms. It also protects the skin from cell mutation when exposed to ultraviolet rays and pollution. 

Not only does it act as a natural sunscreen for your skin, but it can also increase physical strength and muscle endurance. So if you are participating in any outdoor activities during the summer such as sports or swimming, make sure to look for vitamin E to boost your energy!

What Are Some Recipes?

Now that you've learned about the three most important vitamins for summer, you must be wondering, How can I get them? Well, here are some recipes from other members at Spoon University that have all these vitamins covered.

1. Berry-Banana Smoothies

These berry smoothies are perfect if you're craving something delicious and healthy. They are loaded with many different types of vitamins (such as vitamin C and E) and other nutritions as well. Plus, they are easy to make and only require 3 ingredients.

2. Banana Nut Pancakes

banana, cream, pancake, chocolate
Jacie Fukada

Not only do these pancakes make a perfect breakfast, but they also provide nutrition as well. The nuts in these pancakes contain a great deal of vitamin E, and the bananas also contain vitamin C. It's the best way to start a day!

3. Fruit Waters

Tired of the ordinary H2O and want to add some flavors to it? Well, these fruit-infused waters are what you are looking for. Like I've mentioned before, fruits can provide a huge variety of vitamins. Adding them to water gives you more nutrition and also more flavor.

Now you know what vitamins can protect you the most during the summer, and easy ways to obtain them. Next time you go out to buy sunscreen, make sure to purchase some fruits and veggies that contain these vitamins. If there is natural sunscreen, why not use it?