Summer is here in all its glory. The days are longer, lazier and a little bit stressed, while intense heat is gushing out of the sun. But that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying the season, for summertime is also synonymous with fun, travel, beaches, hanging out with friends and family.
However, in the midst of all this fun and excitement, people tend to forget to take care of their health. It can be hectic to balance the summer recreation with work and other responsibilities. Plus the frantic pace of today’s life can lead to increased levels of stress and, in some cases, illness.
If you are preparing to spend this summer entertaining yourself with your friends and family, you need to weigh in some simple strategies to maintain your health and happiness.
Here are six simple yet powerful strategies to stay healthy and happy:
Manage your stress effectively
To begin with, stress can ruin your plans of having an awesome summertime. It’s the perfect opportunity to let go of all the stress that has been accumulating in your life.
Managing stress is all about revisiting your lifestyle, thoughts, emotions, and the way you deal with problems.
Regardless of the time of year stress can put your well-being at risk.
You need to be resilient to hold up under pressure and meet the challenges head-on.
There are 4 A’s of stress management: Avoid. Alter. Adapt and Accept!
You can bring them into practice with whatever you do. Many people most likely end up with trauma treatment, if they don’t address and manage their stress effectively. Summer is also a great time to develop new hobbies like gardening, hiking, camping, swimming, etc. All these activities will help you strip away that excess stress from your life.
Get plenty of exercise
Physical activity is always great to lead a healthy lifestyle regardless of any season. Summer weather is most ideal to exercise outdoors while getting the whole family involved. However, you should start exercising moderately and gradually work your way up to heavy workouts. Taking up high impact exercises straight away can lead to soreness, cramps or injury.
If you want to lose that extra flab, now is the perfect time for you!
Richly oxygenated blood due to a workout nourishes your brain, sharpens your mind and increases your thinking and reasoning ability. If the weather is too hot for you, move it indoors and even go ahead and get a gym membership.
To stay healthy, just go for fresh, local and seasonal foods as much as you can. Watermelons, summer squash, cucumber, berries, etc. are filled with nourishing juices that have anti-oxidant properties. Foods high in fiber keep you feeling full and also help fight disease; certain fruits and vegetables have ample amount of fiber such as legumes, avocados, nuts, beets, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, etc. These foods require little or no preparation, thus limiting your time in the kitchen.
Also, since warmer temperatures can easily spoil food, you need to be extra careful. Summer is the time when people fall ill easily, so you need to add proteins, minerals and vitamins in your diet. Proteins boost your immunity to fight against germs, therefore include fish, vegetables, eggs, salads, and seafood in your diet.
Protect yourself from sun’s fury
Overexposure to sun rays is not good for your skin; much worse is the summer sun. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiations can cause skin cancer or sunburns. So protect yourself from the sun when you go outside, especially during the long warm days.
Protect your eyes with sunglasses that block most of the UV rays. Before going out, use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30. Put it on at least for two hours, especially after swimming or sweating. Avoid tanning beds and sunlamps, both can cause serious damage to your skin on a long-term basis.
The summer heat drains out water and other important nutrients from your body in the form of sweat, leaving you feeling low and dehydrated.
Dehydration can lead to dry skin, feeling dizzy, rapid heartbeat, and even fainting. So, adequate consumption of liquid benefits your body as well as mind, thereby increasing your physical performance and endurance.
Furthermore, if you consume adequate fresh and clean water, your blood pressure will be optimized, your body temperature will be regulated, and your digestion is improved.
Drinking sufficient amounts of water helps replenish the fluids lost by excessive sweating. It is also good for proper muscle function, joint and brain protection and immune health.
Your body requires enough amount of sleep in order to restore and rejuvenate, grow muscles, repair tissues, and synthesize hormones.
Healthy sleep is critical for everyone to retain information and learn skills to thrive in life.
Because of long daylight hours in summer, you tend to wake up fairly early and go to bed late at night, as a result too little sleep and low energy. It’s a good idea to maintain a consistent summer sleep routine.
There are certain health consequences of skimping on sleep during summer, including changes in mood, difficulty paying attention, loss of appetite, etc.
Wherever you are and whatever you have planned for the summer, open your mind to embracing, understanding and practicing improved sleep rituals.
So whatever you have planned over these weeks and months keep in mind these strategies to stay healthy and you will be able to make the very best of the summer!
Article by Chris Myers