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Beat the Heat: Here's How to Stay Cool in Hot Weather

swimming

We're quickly rolling into the month of July, and judging by the way that things are going, it's going to be a scorcher this summer.

While hot weather is nice, and you've never looked better than with that killer tan, it's crucial to know how to keep yourself cool.

Heat stroke—or worse, hyperthermia—are very real things. When your body produces way too much heat, or absorbs way too much heat, it can cause some serious damage.

Without further ado, here are some tips on how you can keep yourself cool, even when it's heating up.

glass of water

1. Drink lots and lots of water

Hydration is key when your body is trying to maintain homeostasis, or the regulated state (in this case, at a decent temperature). Sweating, though kind of unappealing sometimes, is your body's way of cooling you down.

Contrary to popular belief, while iced water is your safest bet in cooling you down, things like pop or energy drinks will also help you cool down. Any liquid is better than no liquid.

Having said that, make sure you're not drinking coffee, as it's a diuretic and can have dehydrating effects.

Sun shining through a palm tree

2. Avoid the sun between 11am to 2pm

The sun is the hottest between 11am and 2pm, and sunburns are most likely to happen during that period. Limiting your exposure will limit your chances of overheating.

If you can't get around not being outside during those hours, make sure you dress appropriately.

drying clothes

3. Dress appropriately

Wear loose, breathable (think: cotton) clothing and footwear that won't leave your feet sweaty. Hats are also crucial for blazing hot weather, keeping you cool by providing shade. Sunglasses will protect your eyes from damaging UV rays.

pillow and bed sheets

4. Refrigerate or freeze your bedsheets

Once you try this trick, you'll wonder why you haven't thought of it before. Place your bedsheets in your fridge or freezer for a half an hour before you sleep, and you'll never have trouble falling asleep because of the heat again.

Also consider investing in soft gel packs that you can place underneath your sheets, or tucked between your legs (wrapped in a tea towel).

ice bags

5. Cool down your "hot zones"

Your pressure points are your secret key to happiness! Applying a little ice pack or a bottle filled with iced water will help you cool down immediately.

These pressure points are:

- Ankles
- Behind the knees
- Wrists
- Elbow bends
- Neck
- Temples

Spicy Food Chilli

6. Get spicy

Weird but true: spicy foods actually help you cool down. Spicy food increases your blood circulation, which in turn gets you sweaty. And, as we discussed before, sweating cools you down when the sweat cools down.

water melon popsicles

7. Eat a popsicle

It was the best way to cool down when you were a kid, and nothing has changed. Cool down by eating a popsicle!

Try these basil watermelon popsicles, adapted from Williams-Sonoma and beat the heat!

Ingredients
Handful of Urban Cultivator-grown basil
1/2 seedless baby watermelon, peeled and flesh cut into large chunks

Directions
Juice the basil and watermelon in an electric juicer according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Stir the juice with a spoon. Working in batches, pour the juice into the wells of an ice pop mold and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Makes 8 pops.

Smoothie

8. Make a smoothie to cool down

Don't feel like a popsicle? An ice-cold smoothie will bring your temperature right down, not only because of its chilly factor, but also because it'll keep you hydrated.

Smoothie hack: add liquids like coconut water or blend some wheatgrass in, both of which have hydrating properties.

Try this strawberry-watermelon hydrating smoothie, adapted from Pop Sugar.

Ingredients
1 cup watermelon
1/4 cup strawberries
1/2 cucumber
1/2 cup pure, unsweetened coconut water
4 ice cubes
1 handful of wheatgrass

Method
Add ingredients to a blender until smooth, and enjoy!

Salad

9. Have more salads

How does a hot bowl of soup sound on this hot sunny day? Not so good?

Choose chilled items for lunch instead. Salads are a great option, and you'll also be feeling healthier than if you downed a burger for lunch.

Try this spotted prawn summer salad, featuring an assortment of Urban Cultivator-grown microgreens and herbs!

leaves

By following these tips, you'll be able to enjoy your summer without suffering through the heat. Remember to reapply sunscreen every few hours to make sure you reduce the risk of burning!

If you want fresh vegetables through the hot summer months, but don't want to garden in the sun, growing in an Urban Cultivator is answer.

You'll get nutritious microgreens and herbs for smoothies, popsicles, and salads all summer long!

Have any tips to stay cool? Let us know in the comments section!

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