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Indoor Tanning Association Launches Campaign Attacking Melanoma Hype

Experts Rethink Sun Exposure in Light of New Evidence Showing the Benefits of UV Light Outweigh Perceived Risks

WASHINGTON, March 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, the Indoor Tanning Association (ITA) launched an aggressive nationwide campaign encouraging the public to rethink sun-tanning and criticizing dermatologists and the sunscreen and cosmetics industries for scaring Americans out of the sun.

The advertising blitz begins with a full-page print ad in The New York Times and a television ad airing in major media markets throughout the country. The ITA has also launched two new websites, and

The campaign highlights recent scientific evidence showing that exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light, whether from the sun or a tanning bed, stimulates the natural production of vitamin D -- found to protect against heart disease and many types of cancer. Unfortunately, 60% of Americans are now vitamin D deficient, due in part to the profit-motivated fear-mongering by dermatologists and the sunscreen and cosmetic industries.

Vitamin D deficiency is particularly common in cities north of the 37th parallel, where it is impossible to get the vitamin in adequate amounts from the sun during the bleak winter months. The ITA's campaign will focus on those cities, with commercials airing in New York, Boston, Washington D.C., Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle, and Pittsburgh.

Many experts are beginning to change their opinions about sun-tanning in light of the fact that there is no compelling evidence that UV exposure causes melanoma. One prominent dermatologist, Dr. A. Bernard Ackerman -- recipient of the "Master Dermatologist Award" from the American Academy of Dermatology -- has published the most comprehensive report on the issue, The Sun and the Epidemic of Melanoma: Myth on Myth!

"Both the sun and tanning beds have been unnecessarily demonized by special interests using junk science and scare tactics," says Sarah Longwell, spokeswoman for the ITA. "While our campaign will be controversial, its time people learned the truth about sun exposure. Not only is moderate tanning completely safe, more and more it's becoming just what the doctor ordered."

To schedule an interview, contact Sarah Longwell at 202.420.7865.

The Indoor Tanning Association represents thousands of indoor tanning manufacturers, distributors, facility owners and members from other support industries. The ITA promotes a responsible message about moderate tanning and sunburn prevention.

SOURCE Indoor Tanning Association
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