Image: A worker takes a bath from the water of a bore pump on a hot summer day in Gurgaon. Reuters/Anindito Mukherjee
The summer has just started, but the temperatures have already hit 40 degrees in many places. With the mercury set to soar even higher, it is important that you keep yourself cool and safe this summer. Follow these 10 tips to beat the heat, and stay comfortable this summer:
Stay hydrated: Following the eight glasses of water a day rule can help you stay hydrated, flush the toxins out, and keep your skin and hair healthy. For eco-friendly and natural ways of keeping your water cool, use earthenware pots. Coconut water is also a good drink during the summer – it provides instant energy and helps replace lost electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. Drinking buttermilk, juices and green tea will also keep you hydrated. However, it would be best to avoid too much alcohol, as it has a dehydrating effect.
Wearing loose fitting clothes, light coloured, cottons: By wearing loose-fitting clothes, your body will have ample space for the sweat to cool off. Light colours reflect heat, as opposed to the darker colours, which tend to trap heat – hence wearing light coloured cottons will help you stay cool and comfortable.
Fruits, salads and fruit popsicles: Consume plenty of fruits and salads to keep yourself hydrated, healthy, and your body and skin toxin free. Seasonal fruits, especially those with a high water and low calorific content such as melons will help keep you hydrated, and are good for the skin and hair. The much loved mango contains high amounts of vitamin C, iron and selenium, and is also rich in potassium, which helps regulate the heart rate and blood pressure, making it the perfect summer fruit; pineapples, grapes, oranges are also great during the summers. You can also make frozen fruit popsicles: Fill an ice tray with fruit juices of your choices, insert ice cream sticks on to them, and freeze for at least six hours – viola, you have your own home-made ice fruit popsicles. You can do the same with fresh fruits and yogurt, as well
Avoid going out in the afternoon: As much as possible, avoid going out when the sun is at its peak, between 12 pm and 4 pm. And, if you must, always carry water and other hydrating liquids with you, and cover your head.
Use sunscreen lotion: Whenever you go out, a sunscreen lotion will help protect your skin against harmful ultraviolet rays and damage. Go for a sunscreen lotion which has a Sun Protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher, and apply it evenly over all exposed parts of your body.
Follow a simple exercise routine: While high temperatures can make your workouts uncomfortable, a brisk walk or a slow jog will actually cool you down – you sweat as you workout, and this helps to lower down your body temperature, and cool you down, apart from keeping you fit and active. Avoid exercising during the daytime, when the sun is at its peak, though, and drink plenty of water and liquids to replace the lost electrolytes, post a workout.
Eat spicy food: While most would suggest otherwise, eating spice food has actually been proven to help lower the body temperature. This is because the capsaicin in chili raises your body temperature to the temperature outside, making your blood circulate faster, and thus making you sweat it out. This helps your body cool down. Oily food, however, can have the opposite effect.
Make DIY air conditioners at home: These are cost effective and eco-friendly means of keeping your home cool. Wet a bed sheet and drape it over the window – as it dries, the cool air will get blown into the house. Keep a tray of ice cubes in front of a table fan (if you have one), as the ice evaporates, this will help spread the cool air around the room. And, lower the heat levels in the room, by turning off all electrical items when not in use.
Wear sunglasses: Extended exposure to the sun has been known to damage the eyes, and cause problems such as cataract and macular degeneration. Sunglasses help protect your eyes against the harsh sunlight, and harmful UV rays. While buying sunglasses, it is best to look for a pair that that blocks 100 percent of UV rays and absorbs most High Energy Visible (HEV) radiation.
Avoid heavy makeup: Allow your skin to breathe and avoid using heavy makeup, especially if your skin is oily. Instead of opting for dark colours, use light coloured makeup – this will add a glow to your face. If you need to moisturise, use an oil-free one. And always remember to use a cleanser and remove your makeup completely before going to bed. yahoo