Soaring temperatures are taking a heavy toll this summer. But summers can be fun with a healthier lifestyle, change in diet and some precautionary measures.
- Summers are usually between March to June in most parts of India and average temperatures are around 32 to 40°C.
- According to the Indian Meteorological Department, 2015 was the hottest year ever recorded but the summer of 2016 could possibly be the hottest.
Common heat problems and home remedies to deal with them
1. Heat Stroke: Lower the temperature of the body, wear loose and light clothes and drink lots of water.
2. Heat Cramps: Rest in a cool place, drink clear juice or electrolyte-enriched drinks and do not take up strenuous activity.
3. Heat Exhaustion: Consume cool, non-alcoholic beverages, take a cool shower, and wear light clothing.
4. Dehydration: Consume water, clear broths with electrolytes, and fever medications if required.
5. Rosacea (red skin): Avoid direct sunlight, and use a good sunscreen with SPF 30+.
6. Sunburn: Apply cool milk, lotions with aloe vera, cool cucumber paste, and avoid sun exposure.
7. Prickly Heat: Take cold showers, wear loose clothes, keep the area dry and clean, and apply talcum powder after a bath.
8. Foot Infection: Scrub your feet and the toes thoroughly, and apply anti-bacterial powders.
Tips to stay healthy throughout the harsh summer
1. Stay adequately hydrated at all times (drink a minimum of 4 litres of fluid). Consume plenty of citrus fruits like oranges and lemon, which are the excellent sources of electrolytes.
2. Wear light coloured and loose fitting clothes (cotton clothes are the best). Lighter colours reflect light so you will not feel the heat as much. Loose clothes allow easy circulation of air and help cool you down.
3. Take a cool shower. This improves blood circulation and helps you shake off the exhaustion you feel due to the heat.
4. Eat easily digestible foods and include a good amount of fresh fruits and raw veggies with high water content. Avoid spicy, oily and salty foods as these require more water to be digested.
5. Cover up using a sunscreen, hat, scarf or umbrella whenever you step out. These also protect your skin from sunburn, freckles and heat rashes.
6. Cut down on strenuous exercises; you may experience muscle pain or spasms in the abdomen, arms or legs due to depletion of salt and water.
7. Do not leave your kids in a closed car. Even with the air conditioner on, the temperature inside a car can rise dangerously in no time.
Keep yourself healthy, take these simple precautions and enjoy the season to its fullest!
Did You Know?
The dog days of summer are the hot sunny days in the weeks of July and August and are named after the Dog Star, Sirius which rises at the same time as the sun during this period.
- Mayoclinic. Accessed April 27, 2016.
- Medicine Net. Accessed April 27, 2016.
- DNA India. Accessed April 28, 2016.
- National Geographic. Accessed April 28, 2016.