Beating the Heat: Summer Health Tips for Arizonans, Pt. 2
Two weeks ago, we shared a few best practices for staying healthy and cool during our sweltering Arizona summer months, including staying hydrated, protecting your skin from sun damage, choosing the right clothing for temperature and sun protection, and proper exercising techniques for our extreme heat. Below, we offer some additional tips for summer health and safety, including how to prepare and store foods, manage allergies and respiratory issues, keep your home cool, and nutrition considerations during extreme heat periods. Follow these tips from our Phoenix AZ chiropractor to stay healthy and cool!
Remember To Visit Your Phoenix Chiropractor!
Before we dig into part two of this blog, we want to point out that most, if not all, of the health-related issues discussed here to impact our body temperature and homeostasis (the state of balance among all the body systems needed for the body to survive and function correctly), are regulated by a properly-functioning nervous system. Did you know that regular corrective care to keep our nervous system performing optimally is a key benefit of chiropractic care?
Maintaining proper nervous system health requires both an understanding of your body’s individual performance and baseline health, as well as ensuring your body is optimized to allow for proper nervous system health, so regular visits to your chiropractor and adjustments should be a part of everyone’s baseline health regimen. If you have questions about how chiropractic can work for you, it’s time to schedule that consultation with Dr. Zamora at Imagine Wellness Chiropractic!
Preparing & Storing Food Properly During Summer Months
The hot summer months in Arizona can make food spoil quickly and increase the risk of foodborne illnesses. To prevent this, here are some tips for preparing and storing food properly:
- Keep It Clean: Always wash your hands and any surfaces that will come in contact with food before preparing or serving.
- Keep It Cool: The USDA recommends keeping perishable food items such as meats, dairy products, and leftovers in the refrigerator or a cooler with ice until ready to eat.
- Keep It Separate: To avoid cross-contamination, store raw meats and their juices in separate containers and use separate utensils when cooking and serving.
- Keep It Covered: To protect food from insects and other pests, always cover it when not being served or stored.
- Keep An Eye On Expiration Dates: Check the expiration dates of perishable items regularly, and discard any that have expired.
- Keep It Hot: When cooking outdoors, use a meat thermometer to ensure that meats are cooked to the appropriate temperature and serve them immediately.
By following these simple tips, you can help ensure that you and your family stay healthy and safe during the hot summer months. Don't let the heat spoil your food and ruin your summer fun!
Managing Allergies Respiratory Issues During High Pollen Seasons
Summer is not just about heat in Arizona - it also brings a rise in pollen levels that can lead to allergies and respiratory problems. If you are someone who experiences such issues, then it is important to take some steps to manage them during the summer months. Here are some tips to help you manage allergies and respiratory problems during high pollen seasons.
- Stay Informed: Keep a check on local pollen counts and plan your outdoor activities accordingly. You can also check the National Allergy Bureau's website to get updates on pollen levels in your area.
- Invest In A Good Air Purifier: Investing in an air purifier for your home can help reduce the number of airborne allergens that you are exposed to.
- Keep Windows & Doors Closed: During high pollen season, keep windows and doors closed to prevent pollen from entering your home.
- Use A Humidifier: A humidifier can help moisten the air and reduce symptoms associated with allergies and respiratory problems.
- Practice Good Hygiene: Be sure to wash your hands and face regularly and take a shower after spending time outdoors to remove any pollen that may have been collected on your skin and hair.
- Visit An Allergist: If your symptoms persist, consider visiting an allergist to determine if allergy shots or other medications can help alleviate your symptoms.
Keeping Your Home Cool & Energy-Efficient Without Breaking The Bank
In Arizona, summers are long, hot, and often unbearable. And as temperatures rise, so does our energy consumption as we blast our air conditioners to stay comfortable. Unfortunately, this can result in high energy bills that put a strain on our finances. Fortunately, there are some easy steps you can take to keep your home cool and energy-efficient without breaking the bank.
- Close Your Blinds & Curtains During The Day: This simple tip can help keep the sun’s heat from entering your home and warming it up.
- Use A Programmable Thermostat: A programmable thermostat can help you control your home’s temperature, so it doesn't waste energy when you're not home. For example, set the thermostat to be cooler at night when you’re sleeping and higher when you’re not home during the day.
- Use Fans Instead Of The Air Conditioner: Fans can help circulate cool air around your home, reducing the amount of time you need to run your air conditioner. Use ceiling fans or portable fans in the rooms you're using, and make sure they're set to spin counterclockwise in the summer to push cool air down.
- Seal Your Home’s Windows & Doors: Make sure your windows and doors are properly sealed to keep cool air in and warm air out.
- Install Reflective Film On Windows: Reflective film on your windows can help block out the sun’s rays and keep your home cooler.
- Cook Outside Or Use The Microwave: Avoid using your oven during the hottest parts of the day. Instead, cook outside on the grill, or use the microwave to heat up meals.
- Use Energy-Efficient Appliances: Energy-efficient appliances like refrigerators and air conditioners use less electricity, saving you money on your energy bills.
Nutrition & Extreme Heat
When the temperatures rise in Arizona, it can be challenging to maintain a healthy diet and stay nourished. The heat can impact our appetite, making us feel less hungry and dehydrated. Here are some nutrition and heat best practices to keep in mind this summer:
- Stay Hydrated: Drinking plenty of water and other hydrating fluids is essential during the summer months in Arizona. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water a day to help keep you hydrated.
- Avoid Sugary Drinks: When the temperatures rise, it can be tempting to reach for sugary drinks like soda or juice. However, these drinks are loaded with sugar and calories, and they can actually dehydrate you. Stick to water, unsweetened tea, or coconut water instead.
- Eat Cooling Foods: Eating cooling foods can help regulate your body temperature and keep you feeling refreshed. Opt for fruits like watermelon, cucumber, and strawberries or veggies like celery and lettuce.
- Eat Small Meals: Eating small meals throughout the day can help regulate your blood sugar levels and prevent you from feeling lethargic in the heat. Stick to lighter, nutrient-dense meals like salads or smoothie bowls.
- Avoid Heavy Meals: Avoid heavy meals that can make you feel sluggish and bloated in the heat. Heavy, greasy, and high-fat meals can take a toll on your digestive system, leaving you feeling uncomfortable.
- Stay Cool: Finally, remember to keep your food and beverages cool when you're out and about. Carry a cooler or insulated bag with you to keep your food fresh and chilled. Avoid leaving food or drinks in the car for extended periods, as the heat can cause them to spoil.
By keeping these summer and extreme heat best practices in mind, you'll be able to stay healthy and nourished throughout the summer months in Arizona. Stay cool, stay hydrated, and enjoy all the wonderful seasonal beauty that summer in the desert has to offer!
Imagine Wellness Chiropractic and Dr. Roxane Zamora can provide you with many more tips and considerations for staying healthy – please call our office at (623) 582-8951 with any questions you may have or to schedule a wellness consultation today!
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