Ways To Stay Healthy In The Summer Heat

Photo by Jay Wennington on Unsplash

One thing I hate worse than freezing temperatures is crazy hot temperatures. The extremes are hard for our bodies; emotionally and physically. While summer seems to be coming way too early and days becoming a little too hot we sometimes don’t have time (or don’t remember) that we need to take care of our bodies in these extremes.

While I recently talked about taking care of your skin during the summer here, this is more for the insides to stay happy and healthy. Hanging out outside for even an hour isn’t just damaging for your skin, it can potentially hurt your organs (and mind) as well. While you should never forget the SPF, these things are just as important to keep in mind the next time you find yourself outside for a prolonged period.

Avoid the high UV hours
While this sometimes isn’t possible, try to find shady spots during the peak UV exposure. This is usually more towards the early afternoon of the day when the sun is highest. If you aren’t sure when that is you can always look at your local weather app to see (almost all show the time when it will be high).

While this time is perfect for 80s kids to go tanning, it is also the highest chance of burning your skin or causing harmful rays to enter the body (the ones that can cause cancer). Try to find a shaded area or stay inside if at all possible.

Water is your best friend
If you are outside for the day, I can almost promise you that the amount of water you consume is not enough. I work a part-time job outdoors, and I have learned firsthand that the average amount of H20 that we typically consume is not enough when in the sun. If you are not going to the restroom often then you are not drinking enough (a good rule of thumb).

If needed set the alarm every half hour to consume a cup. If you start the day with coffee or drink something besides water (like soda or energy drinks), then you will have to drink an equal amount of water to balance out. A good rule to keep is one cup every half hour you are outside (two if possible).

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

Know the signs of heat stroke
If you have had a heat stroke before you know how scary they are. You should also be aware that if you have had a heat stroke anytime in your life, you are also a lot more susceptible to getting one again (and no one likes that). I had one at a very young age from a school activity we had. Due to this, I am incredibly aware of how my body feels when I am outside for long periods and I make sure to take plenty of breaks.

If you start to feel cold or stop sweating (or stop craving water), you are in a high-risk zone. Make sure to take breaks, drink plenty of fluids, and find a way to cool your body down immediately. If a heat stroke is left unattended, you could potentially damage organs (or worse).

Make sure to consume sugars and electrolytes
This doesn’t mean go out and buy a Hershey’s bar to munch on (although that doesn’t sound like a bad idea).  Electrolytes actually help all that water enter the cells for maximum hydration. Same with sugar. In the dead heat, we need all the components to make sure our body stays well hydrated. A hydrated body keeps us sweating, keeps our body balanced, and protects our organs (including skin). 

Avoid over intoxication
I’m not saying you can’t go out and have a good time, just be safe about the fact. Alcoholic drinks are HUGE at dehydrating your body, and that can be even more harmful during the hot days. If you do go out and have a drink try staying inside for periods and make sure to not skip the water. I typically order water with my beverage and make sure to finish it before getting any seconds.

Summer is great! We just need to make sure we treat our bodies’ right so we have the best summer we can have (and the healthiest of summers). When you treat your body well, it returns the favor.


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