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Stay Cool This Summer

ThinkstockPhotos-153531292The air conditioner and fans are on full blast, the shorts and tank tops are out of storage and a cold ice tea is nearby. It’s officially the summer season! With average Cincinnati temps in the mid to upper 80s most of the summer and factoring in the humidity, you’ll undoubtedly be looking for ways to stay cool and safe this summer.

  1. Stay hydrated. Keep plastic bottles of water in the freezer; grab one when you’re ready to go outside. As the ice melts, you’ll have cold water to drink. If you aren’t a fan of water, drink sports drinks or other sources of electrolytes. Avoid caffeine and alcohol as they promote dehydration.
  2. Avoid spicy foods. Eating spicy foods will elevate your body temperature, making you feel even hotter. Instead of those types of foods, eat small meals or snacks containing cold fruit or low fat dairy products. It’s also a good idea to avoid standing over a hot, steamy stove for several hours if you don’t have access to air-conditioning.
  3. Wear light colored clothes. Wear cotton, loose-fitting clothing, preferably of a light color so you’ll stay cooler. Dark colored clothing attracts and traps heat.
  4. Hang out in the air-conditioning. If you don’t have air-conditioning, arrange to spend time at someone’s house who does have air-conditioning. If that’s not an option, go to a shopping mall, public library, movie theater or other public spaces that are air-conditioned. Many cities, including Cincinnati have cooling centers that are open to the public on really hot days.
  5. Exercise early or late. Exercising outside is refreshing and preferred by many but do so during the cooler times of the day such as morning or evening. If those times don’t work with your schedule, seek shade frequently, take breaks often and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.

Remember, heat related illnesses such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke can come on quickly and without notice. Stay safe and healthy this summer and check on older adults as they are more susceptible to extreme heat and cold.

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