More than 800,000 people live with the two life-long disorders which make up IBD -- Crohn's Disease and ulcerative colitis.
The paediatric study was based in Melbourne and led by Professor Robyn Lucas, from the ANU College of Health and Medicine.
Children - Sun - Professor - Lucas
"Taking children to play outside in the sun could be life-changing," Professor Lucas said.
"It doesn't have to be all at the same time. But, we found children who were outside and exposed to the sun for an extra half hour a day in total, had a lower risk of developing IBD by almost 20 per cent."
Researchers - Periods - Sun - Exposure - Risk
The researchers found even short periods of sun exposure were associated with lower risk of children developing IBD.
"We found every 10 minutes of sun exposure was associated with a lower risk of developing inflammatory bowel disease by six per cent," Professor Lucas said.
Stage - Link - Lack - Sun - Exposure
"At this stage what we have shown is there is a link between lack of sun exposure and increased risk of IBD.
"We already know that sunshine affects the immune system in ways that could decrease IBD -- but...
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