Staying Healthy During Hot Summer Days
It’s essential to stay active and get fresh air every day, but staying safe and cool in the summer is especially important. Read on for some tips to stay healthy during the hot Deep South summer days without getting overheated.
Stay hydrated in the heat. That is quite possibly the most important thing you can do to keep yourself healthy. The CDC recommends taking frequent sips of water (8 ounces every 15-20 minutes) over drinking large amounts more infrequently.
Stay away from alcohol, sodas, and sports drinks. The extra sugar, caffeine, and salt not only contribute to weight gain and tooth decay but also increase urination, which further increases dehydration. You may think the added electrolytes from sports drinks would be beneficial, but a balanced diet and frequent water intake are sufficient to keep healthy people hydrated.
If you really want extra electrolytes, drink 100% coconut water. It has naturally occurring electrolytes, plus loads of other health benefits, like cancer-fighting antioxidants that lower blood sugar, prevent kidney stones, and increase heart health.
If you’re going to be out in the sun during the day, protect yourself from the harmful UV ray. This is the second most important thing to do (after drinking water, of course). Sunscreen should be used every single day with a minimum of 30 SPF (which, by the way, stands for sun protection factor), but if you’re planning to be in direct sunlight, use 60 or greater. Also be sure to get a “broad spectrum” sunscreen to protect you from both UVA and UVB rays, which are responsible for sunburns as well as skin cancer.
Wear protective clothing. This is also a great way to keep safe from the sun. Wear a sun hat with at least a 3-inch brim and long-sleeved, bright, or dark-colored clothing. Yes, light colors will keep you cooler, but bright and dark colors will absorb the UV rays, keeping your skin safe. Even better? UPF Fabric clothing will keep you protected without having to reapply.
Even though it’s hot outside, sitting on the couch watching TV in the air conditioning is no way to stay healthy. Brush off that dusty treadmill and put it to good use. And guess what? If you put it in the same room as your TV, you can still watch while you walk!
Get wet! Did you know that swimming is regarded as one of the best exercises for older adults? It’s the only exercise that lowers the risk of falls, and it’s also easy on your joints and works all the muscles from your head to your toes. And now that you know how to keep your skin protected from the sun, you have nothing to worry about. Grab your swimsuit and go!
Timing is everything, right? If your daily ritual includes a walk to the mailbox, don’t give it up –– just adjust your timing. Instead of going in the hot afternoon hours, go first thing in the morning or later in the evening when the temperature is a bit cooler. The only downside to this is it’s mosquitoes’ favorite time to be out, so spray on some insect repellent before you head out.
No matter the season, staying healthy is the key to a well-lived life, but being healthy isn’t just physical. Be sure to foster your relationships with friends and family, stay mentally sharp, tap into your spirituality, and nurture your emotions too. We are all well-rounded individuals with unique abilities and needs. At CARE Inc, our caregivers are trained to look after your loved ones closely, especially during the hotter months. If you or a loved one needs in-home personal care services, CARE, Inc is here to help. From long-term care to respite care, we’re here to keep you and your loved ones healthy from the comfort of your own home.
About the Guest Blog Writer: Alissa is a writer who lives in the Atlanta area. She's a mom to three boys, a football coach's wife, a grad student, and an amateur photographer. When she's not writing or studying, she enjoys working out, listening to music, and watching true crime stories.
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