Indoor Tanning Association blames Mayo cancer findings on your pale skin

Categories: Science
skin cancer study.jpg
Someone in this picture didn't grow up in Minnesota.
The Indoor Tanning Association is fighting back against a recent Mayo Clinic study that found higher rates of skin cancer in those who use tanning beds, and Minnesotans are getting caught in the crossfire.

A letter released by the association claims that the Mayo study was flawed because the population studied in Olmsted County is much paler and more Scandinavian than the general population of the United States, meaning they were more vulnerable to skin cancer.

The Mayo study found an eightfold increase since 1970 in skin cancer rates for young women and suggests tanning beds are to blame.

"Young women are more likely than young men to participate in activities that increase risk for melanoma, including voluntary exposure to artificial sunlamps."

But the ITA says Mayo got it wrong, and that the real culprit is our ancestors and the pale skin they passed down to Minnesotans.

"It is also important to look at the population they studied, young adults in Olmsted County, Minnesota," reads the association's press release. "Minnesota has a disproportionately high population of fair-skinned people of Scandinavian/Nordic ancestery who, because of their skin type are at a higher risk for melanoma skin cancer. This group is not representative of the US population as a whole."

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Perhaps the Mayo should focus its next skin cancer study on the Jersey shore?

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So, since the ITA claims to be protective of people with very pale skin and says they would not permit them to use tanning beds, there must be no tanning salons in MN ... right? Wrong according to a quick Google search. So apparently they (indoor tanning industry in MN) are subjecting people with very pale skin who won't tan anyway to excessive UV radiation ... or does the pale skin issue only work to attempt to discredit this Mayo report? What is most interesting is the paragraph that states that UVA (the type of UV radiation in tanning bed lamps) puts people at greater risk for melanoma. This the first time I have heard the ITA admit this but I am sure that they have known this all along. It is about time that they acknowledge the dangers of tanning beds!


Reminds me of how oil companies pay for studies that "refute" man made climate change. Or when cigarette companies funded studies on how beneficial smoking is for our health. Nothing new here. I don't trust your science when you've got something to sell.


I love how they basically have to agree to the point that anyone with fair skin then will be exposed to eight fold increase in developing cancer, which I would assume is many of the people tanning anyway. 

I think I would trust the doctors over lobbyist and PR men anyway, but this is pretty poor spin even for them.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Stand up people!It's now or never!This is their foot being shoved into the door.If it can be deemed that tanning is harmful to ones health, where will this mission end?Will they one day charge you admission to a beach because you intend to lay out tanning?Will SPF containing products be required by law.Remember, we are entering the age of socialized medicine, and if its harmful to you, it's harmful to the collective.  the collective will always come before you...

Makes sense
Makes sense

I'm pretty sure Mayo doesn't have any policy-making authority.  What they do have is a mission to educate, which they have accomplished.


You've reached a new level of paranoia, Congratulations.

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