Friday, August 31, 2012

How To Be Healthy This Summer - Health And Fitness In The Heat

Summer time is that time of year that we typically look forward to after, the cold period spanning the winter and a good part of the spring seasons. It is a favorite vacation time for most folks - especially residents in the temperate climate zone. We get to attend festivities, host barbecues and have lots of fun. However, the summer has its down side too. It's when the bugs come out, the price of gas spikes and - we have to deal with the heat and humidity! Now, that is where we have to get concerned about our fitness and health in the summer weather.

It is not hot and humid throughout the summer, fortunately. But, whenever it is, it can be hazardous to our health if we do not take precautionary measures.  And about the health aspect, the casualties from extreme summer weather tend to be those at the age extremes - the very young and the very old. These are the most susceptible group in extreme summer because the capacity of their bodies to adjust to handle the heat and humidity is less effective than that of the rest of the population. The measures can be broadly categorized as keeping well hydrated, dressing in the right clothing and avoiding the heat. Starting with keeping well hydrated, it is important to drink low temperature fluids(cold, chilly)  frequently. Water, fruit juice and ice tea are preferable to soda, coffee and alcohol. The latter drinks are diuretic and encourage loss of body fluids, which results in you getting dehydrated - not good for your health. For exercise zealots, it is smart to have water to hydrate yourself with while you work out.  

The preferred attire for hot, humid weather is light fitting clothing made from cotton as opposed to nylon or rayon. Cotton absorbs perspiration from your skin, thereby helping cool you down. Nylon and other synthetics retain the sweat, making you feel wet (drenched in your own sweat - "yuk"). Light colored (white, silver, yellow) apparel help to keep you cool by reflecting the heat unlike dark colored clothing which absorb and retain heat, thereby keeping you hot. With regard to avoiding heat, opt for conducting outdoor activities (jogging, gardening) when it is cooler (early morning or late evening) and keep to the shades as much as possible or stay indoors during the peak hours of  the heat. Because when the heat peaks, there is the additional problem of raised levels of ozone - which is hazardous when inhaled, especially for the elderly and persons with breathing problems. In the absence of air conditioning, opening the windows, while keeping the blinds or curtains drawn is beneficial in keeping indoor temperatures cool. That is it from me folks. With these tips, enjoy the rest of your summer; keep cool and stay healthy! To contain the summer heat and humidity, a gig that I'd recommend to anyone looking for extra cash is this one - right HERE.  

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