The sun is out, the temperature is high, and it can be quite deadly out if we’re not careful! For many parts of the world, summer can be a great time to hit the beach and let loose – but it shouldn’t be a time for you to forego taking care of your body.
Summer can be deadly if you don’t keep yourself safe from various attacks on your health. One way is through heat stroke, which occurs when your body almost literally shuts down because of high temperature and lack of water. Dehydration can lead to a lot of illnesses. Sunburn can be uncomfortable, but it can really burn and be unhealthy in the long run!
So how do you enjoy the summer without crashing and burning? Here are five ways to get your body rockin’ without risking your health.
- Drink water AND healthy ion drinks
Dry heat gives you the illusion of being ok and not needing water. The feeling of dehydration just hits you when you start cooling down.
How do you avoid getting dehydrated, whether or not you know it? Drink a lot of water – and drink more than your usual. Don’t forget to drink ion drinks as well – which includes sports drinks and even coconut water! Make sure that you drink water that has NOT been deionized, so you don’t miss out on essential ions that your body needs in order to function properly.
- Avoid anything too sweet, salty, or fatty
The last thing you want to do is tax your body’s ability to process nutrients and absorb water. Summer is the time to keep sweets to a minimum, lower your salt intake, and watch your fat intake. You’ll want your body to get as much water as possible, and anything that is too sweet, salty, or fatty can inhibit your body’s ability to absorb water, as well as flush toxins out.
- Use that Sunblock!!!
Apply sunblock liberally: we’re talking a shot glass full of it every few hours. This is because your sweat washes away that sunblock, leaving you ready to start burning again under the sun. You’ll also want sunblock for your lips, in the form of SPF-15 or higher lip balm. Your lips are covered by a thin, sensitive membrane that is easily burned and torn.
There is no shame in an umbrella – so bring one! If you can’t bring one, use sunblock. And don’t let overcast skies fool you: the glare of the sun off of anything will also lead to sunburn. This includes the sunlight bouncing off the pavement, cars, and even sand on the beach!
- Cover your body with lightweight fabric
A lot of people wonder why desert dwellers and travelers cover their body with a lot of clothes. Isn’t it too hot to get all dressed up?
Actually, covering your body with lightweight fabric can slow down dehydration. Of course, thicker, synthetic fabrics will make you sweat faster, so if you’re going out in the heat, avoid wearing these fabrics. Choose 100% cotton instead, and pick clothes with sleeves. Cover yourself to avoid getting dehydrated and you won’t be sorry!
- Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes
The sun can damage your eyes, whether it’s light bouncing off of something or direct from the sun. Protect your eyes with UV-proof sunglasses. This will help you avoid headaches, and it can actually keep you from getting cranky when the sun gets in your eyes. Who wouldn’t be annoyed if they suddenly got blinded and couldn’t see anything?
These are just a few tips for you to follow as you start off your summer. Make sure that you drink more water and avoid diuretics, such as tea or coffee. You can even indulge in water-rich fruits, such as apples or cucumbers. With protection, vigilance, and watchfulness, you’ll really enjoy your summer without getting sick in the process!
Inez Ponce de Leon is a writer, science communicator, scientist, and belly dancer. She loves beaches, books, movies, and way too many things – hence, she writes way too much, too. She loves taking on a wide variety of topics, such as brain supplements, genetics, love advice, metal fabricators, and how to really take a vacation.