Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Beat the Heat

For those of you up in the Pacific Northwest, you may be thinking "what heat?"  That's a legitimate question.  However, it does seem that the rest of the country is experiencing not only a summer, but a blistering one at that.  Don't worry, I'm sure we'll get some up in the PNW sooner or later.  And when we do, I want you to be informed on the best ways to keep your healthy body healthy during the hot summer.

First of all, you don't need to avoid the outdoors.  Getting outside to get some fresh air and soak up the rays to increase your body's Vitamin D levels is always essential.  But when it's hot out, it's a little harder to do so.  What you can do is sit outside in the shade or go to a more breezy area (like the beach) so you can still get your outdoor time.  You also don't need to lather on the sunblock (future topic!).  Get 10 minutes of sun before putting on the block.  You can still get outside when it's hot out without roasting.

Try to keep the house cool.  One of the best ways to do so is to limit cooking in the house as much as possible.  Using a grill or having chilled or room temperature meals will help keep the heat levels down.

Don't be afraid to sweat.  Just like every other process that your body undertakes, sweating is a natural and good thing.  Yes, it may look unappealing and cause olfactory tingling odors, but sweating is your body's natural way of cooling yourself down.  Try to avoid using anti-perspirants which typically use chemicals or substances to either stop the sweat glands from producing sweat or even clog them up.  Embrace your sweat, don't try to hide it. 

Finally, stay hydrated.  When people overheat, it's more than likely due to the fact that their body has lost too much fluid.  When your body is optimally hydrated, it is able to perform all of the necessary, health-oriented functions possible, including keeping itself cool.  A good rule of thumb for water consumption is to drink half of your body's weight in ounces per day (ie: 150 lb person should drink 75 ounces of water per day).  However, if you've been sweating a lot of that water off, been out in the sun for a while, or done some travelling lately, you can always up the intake.

So instead of running and hiding from the heat, embrace it and find ways to beat the heat and stay healthy while doing it.  Of course, when all else fails, you can stop by the clinic for an adjustment.  We have air conditioning.

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