This article is from the Naturism FAQ, by Dennis Kirkpatrick firstname.lastname@example.org with numerous contributions by others.
Naturism has often been associated with the all-over tan. (The word
"sunbathing" has been used as a euphemism for years.) However,
research has shown that the sun can be harmful when taken in excess,
and that things aren't going to change for the better. Skin cancer, in
particular, is a major concern for active naturists. This doesn't
necessarily have anything to do with nudity - nudity exposes only
slightly more skin than a swimsuit - but it has everything to do with
the long hours in the sun favored by some naturists.
This is not to say that you shouldn't sunbathe. Sunbathing is not
deadly if done in moderation. Use a sunscreen. Avoid sunbathing during
the middle of the day when the sun's rays are the most intense. Limit
your time in the sun to avoid burning. Above all, be sensible. Know
what you're doing and what the possible consequences are.
Nude activity doesn't have to depend on the sun. For example, you
could hike nude through a shady forest, or enjoy a nude jog in a warm
spring shower. Indoor naturism is popular as well. And skinny-dipping
by moonlight is a time-honored tradition. So, naturism can be enjoyed
in and out of the sun. The best strategy is to do each when
appropriate, and don't overdo your sun exposure.