It might be time to permanently ditch the tanning booth. According to a new study, people under 40 who seek the salon for a golden glow have a 69 percent increased risk of Basal cell carcinoma (BCC), a type of skin cancer.
The study consisted of nearly 800 people under 40 years old, half of whom had been diagnosed with BCC. Researchers interviewed each participant about their history of indoor UV exposure, and results exposed the cancer and tanning salon connection— something way worse than a bad sunburn. Turns out steering clear of tanning beds helps avoid 43 percent of early onset BCC cases in women, and 27 percent of all cases.
Soaking up artificial rays is often more dangerous than lying in the sun, since tanning booths can emit UV rays at a single, high intensity (compared to their outdoor competitor, whose intensity varies based on the season, time of day, and cloud cover). Stick to the natural sun for a little tan, but make sure to slap on sunscreen for protection. And please, take the “T” out of GTL and stick to just hitting the gym and doing laundry, Jersey Shore style. Looks like going for gold indoors is no longer rewarding.