5 Tips for Surviving the Mid-July Heat Wave

Sunset at Venice Beach

By Jeremy Del Nero on 17 July 2019
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Forecasters expect temperatures to reach the high 90s in much of the United States in the coming days and, in some cases, accompanied by severe weather.

While many enjoy the scorching heat, it would be unwise not to take certain precautions, especially for those spending a significant amount of time outdoors.

Here are five tips for staying healthy in the hot summer sun.

1.) Drink lots of water.
Consuming copious amounts of water helps lower your body temperature and, of equal importance, replaces the fluid you lose through perspiration. Other beverages, including soft drinks, coffee, and especially those containing alcohol, are not a substitute and do little to lower your body temperature.

2.) When indoors, use air conditioning and fans.
Most heat strokes occur not when people are out in the sun but when they are inside a home or apartment that is excessively hot (over 78° F or 25° C). Consider an electric fan to circulate air and augment the air conditioning and make it feel cooler.

3.) Avoid rigorous exercise or work at the hottest time of the day.
While the sun is at its highest point in the sky at noon (1 p.m. with Daylight Saving Time), the hottest point of the day is typically between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. since heat builds up instead of dissipating. The drop in temperature is accelerated after sundown. If working outside, take breaks and, as advised above, drink lots of water.

4.) Dress comfortably for the heat.
Wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. An all-black ensemble may look cool but black material will absorb more heat than any other color. Cotton clothing articles will keep you cooler than most synthetics.

5.) Eat lightly.
Instead of a hot meal, try lighter summer fare including fruit and salads. Not using a stove or oven will keep indoor temperatures lower as well. Avoid caffeine and alcohol as these both promote dehydration.

This story originally ran on June 14, 2017 and was updated for the impending heat wave.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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