With Delhi touching a staggering 48 degree Celsius – the highest in the history of the city, it’s important we learn to do our bit to steer clear of potential heat-induced illnesses for the sun evidently isn’t backing down anytime soon.
Pay attention to what you eat
You may have to cut down on the number of cups of coffee you take in a day. Caffeine, alcohol, meat and spicy food all generate body heat. Keep them to a minimum. On the other hand, all kinds of juices and fruits and veggies that are saturated with water promote hydration.
Did you know body heat is necessary to break down food? So the bigger your meals, more is the heat generated. Eat more often but eat less.
Always keep some bottles of water in the freezer; grab them before going out and you will have a supply of cold water with you when the ice starts to melt. The number one method of self-cooling is with water.
Reserve your silks and synthetics for breezy seasons. Breathable cotton is what you should be going for in dry climates. Synthetics are known to block airflow, keeping heat close to the body.
A wide hat keeps the heat off your head and shoulders, keeping signs of heat exhaustion, dizziness and nausea at bay.
Allow your feet to breathe – wear open-toe sandals more often in summer. Hosiery is another wardrobe slip-up people make in the summer. Hosieries do not allow for air circulation.
Keep your curtains closed
Easy to forget but a lot of unwanted heat comes from the windows in our house. Keep your blinds and curtains closed, especially during 11 am to 4 pm. If you’re planning to change your curtains, know that blackout ones block out maximum sunlight.
Don’t neglect your fans
Air conditioners definitely cool the air around you, but the cool sealike breeze you are looking for is only associated with a fan. Use them to induce cross-ventilation by throwing open your doors and windows. But only in the late evening. Temperatures tend to drop in the night in summer months so make use of the night air as much as you can. However, shut the windows and blinds before you go to bed. You don’t want to wake up warmer than you expected.
Freeze your bedsheets
Hot nights are tough to get through without air conditioners. An old trick is to freeze your sheets in a plastic bag for a couple hours before you hit the bed. An ‘Egyptian Method’ asks you to wet your bedsheet and then wring out the water to use it as a blanket that will help you fall asleep faster. You can place a towel under it if you don’t enjoy the excess moisture.
Unplug those appliances
Lightbulbs, especially incandescent bulbs, and appliances emit heat when plugged in. Don’t overlook turning them off. It’s perhaps the easiest way to cut down on unnecessary heat, and on your electricity bills!
Look for shade
Lastly, a no-brainer that people ignore and then end up regretting. Stay indoors when you can. Shift your outdoor exercise timings to cooler hours of the day – early morning or late evening. Not a bad idea to invest in a small, portable battery-powered fan, increasingly being spotted with travellers of-late.