Sun, breeze, swimming: the sea is not just relaxation, but a real medicine. “A therapy with specific benefits for the body and mind, with many indications and even some (rare) contraindications”, says Professor Luca Revelli, endocrine and vascular surgeon at the Gemelli Polyclinic in Rome and Director of the Master of Medicine of the Sea, intervened in Porto Rafael, Sardinia, for the Vele Spiegate exhibition, in an initiative which was also attended by Sara Farnetti, expert in functional medical nutrition, and Alberto Luca Recchi, explorer of the sea. However, thalassotherapy also has its rules: not everyone, for example, is good at the same beaches. “To each his own sea – explains Revelli -, the marine climate, depending on the area, seems to have different effects: for example, that of Sardinia and Corsica, often exuberant and impetuous, would be generically ‘stimulating’; that of the high Adriatic, calm, peaceful, relaxing, it would be decidedly ‘sedative’ “. In decline along the pandemic season, sea therapies are flourishing again and treatment centers on beaches around the world are increasing, where water therapies (hydrotherapy and balneotherapy) are combined with those that exploit the virtues of climate (climatotherapy ), light (heliotherapy), sand (psammotherapy), sea resources (algae and mud) and relaxation.
“A sea of well-being”, underlines Revelli, who adds: “Sea, sun and light first of all promote positive lifestyles, in the open air, favoring a healthier and more contained diet; they also stimulate movement, sports activities and The marine environment also conditions the mood, improving depressive syndromes: one of the most recent treatments for this type of problem consists precisely in a ‘light therapy’, regulated on biological rhythms developed on the individual patient. “.
A beach holiday is particularly suitable for those who need to fill up on vitamin D and iodine. “Almost 50% of Italian adults – underlines Revelli – have low levels of vitamin D in their blood. This means an increased risk of osteopenia, osteoporosis and pathological fractures, following minimal trauma, especially in old age. sun to stimulate the production of vitamin D, able to fix calcium to the bones and stimulate the growth hormone, essential for children and teenagers, but also for the good health of skin, bones and hair of adults. fill up with vitamin D 20 minutes a day of sun exposure would be enough, perhaps in the cooler hours. The sea is still good for the thyroid. In the abyss a fundamental element for our body is concentrated: iodine. It is the main building block for building thyroid hormones If missing, the thyroid gland suffers and reacts by increasing in size and forming goiter and nodules (multinodular goiter).
All sea proteins are rich in iodine: those of fish, molluscs, crustaceans and algae. At the seaside it is easier to eat fresh fish or local products (vegetables, fruit, and vegetables) grown on coastal land rich in iodine “.
The sea is also good for people with other diseases. “To benefit from the sea air, which contains high concentrations of mineral salts such as sodium and magnesium chloride, iodine, calcium, potassium, bromine and silicon – says Revelli – are people with respiratory problems and allergic syndromes. Marine aerosol. it also stimulates the metabolism, tones the blood circulation and strengthens the immune system. Walks in the water improve venous and lymphatic return. The pressure and temperature of the water (generally lower than that of the air) and the wave motion stimulate circulation For swollen legs, a slow walk with water up to the knees is particularly recommended.
Swimming, a complete activity par excellence – he adds – relaxes the muscles and can solve contractures, freeing rusty joints from arthritis and arthrosis. Not to mention the underwater activities – concludes Revelli, himself an expert instructor – even more complete than swimming: it is estimated that almost a thousand calories would be burned in a medium-duration tank dive “.
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