Cheat the Heat
For a healthy, happy summer
It may just be March, but for many parts of the subcontinent, things are already heating up. Summer is just around the corner – and while that brings with it juicy mangos, watermelons and lots of ice cream, it also means being equally careful with your health.
Imagine planning a beach holiday only to have a runny nose in the sweltering heat? Eugh. Here are 5 ways you can stay cool as a cucumber and keep your vitals up this summer.
Hydrate to Feel Great
This one might be the most obvious, but it’s something we forget to do more often than we realise. Make sure to keep a water bottle handy at all times, and keep sipping; don’t wait till you feel thirsty! Staying hydrated is the first line of defence against the heat. While cold water is tempting, try to drink room temperature water to avoid falling sick more easily.
Protect to Deflect
Going out into the sun in the summer requires a little bit of battle preparation. Stick to light, preferably loose fitting clothes in neutral or pastel tones. Darker colors absorb and trap heat, which could lead to overheating in your body. Cotton is the best material for the heat, as it is absorbent and breathable for your skin. If you don’t already own a hat or cap, now’s the time to get one (they’ll last you for years!). Last but not least, slather on some sunscreen with a good amount of SPF. Don’t forget to reapply every few hours!
Fruit Down the Chute
Fruits, especially those rich in water like watermelons, muskmelon, and grapefruit are a great way to hydrate while getting more nutrients. Citrus fruits are great for keeping your Vitamin C levels up, which will in turn strengthen your immune system. Mangoes, papaya and pineapples are other excellent sources of nutrients that help regulate your body temperature. And because your fingers will get sticky, make sure to keep some serviettes on hand!
Spice Like Ice
It may sound counterintuitive, but eating foods rich in spice or capsaicin actually help cool the body down. By attaching itself to the pain receptors in your mouth, capsaicin – the substance that makes peppers spicy – sends signals to your brain that it’s hot. In turn, your body begins to produce more sweat, which cools you down. Be careful not to overdo it as too much spice can cause acidity, because a little goes a long way.
Plan the Tan
As far as possible, stay indoors during the hottest parts of the day. 11 AM to 2 PM is the peak of the sun’s heat, and the longer you stay out, the higher the chances of headaches, fainting, or worse, heatstroke. Try to plan errands, doctor’s appointments, etc around these timings. Move to the shade immediately if you feel dizzy or fatigued, and drink plenty of water. If you plan to be outdoors for longer periods of time, carry electrolytes to put in your water should you need it.
And that’s how we make sure this summer isn’t a bummer. Soak up all that Vitamin D safely, and eat all the popsicles your heart desires! We hope you have a wonderful summer ahead, whether you stay home or go travelling. With these tips, you won’t have to sweat it. Well, you may sweat a little. But that’s worth it in the end, isn’t it?