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© 2014  Kebba Buckley Button, M.S., O.M.  World Rights Reserved.

2014 0621 Red Top SaguaroYikes!  It hit 110 degrees today in Phoenix!  Summer is our weather-stress season, like winter is in cooler areas.  In the Summer heat where you live, have you felt great today?  Or were you hot, tired, and fog-brained?  Maybe even a little sick?  So could you use some expert heat-stress tips?

Feeling good, being well, and being productive, can be challenging in weather like this.  But you can feel great and thrive during even our desert summers, if you take these tips to heart:

1.  Get out of the heat. Do get 15 minutes of sun on your hands and face each day, for your body to produce enough Vitamin D. But you can get that while driving to an errand. The rest of the time, get out of the sun or wear sunscreen and sleeves.  And don’t stop to think in the full sun!  Adjust that grocery list before you go out the front door!

If you love to be outside, you can now buy special sun-blocking clothes from travel companies. You can get shirts designed to provide SPF 50 or higher, plus broad-brimmed hats with mesh-side crowns for through-flow of air. More difficult to find is the safari hat with its own built-in fan, but they are great for hiking. Cooling neck scarves are now widely available. Soak them to activate the gel inside, and store them in the frij between wearings.  Water bottles, with a battery-operated personal fan attached, are amusing and do actually help you keep cooler.

If you get too much heat, you’ll generally know it. But if people tell you your face is bright red, this is not good.  If your skin is totally dry, or if you feel nauseated or are vomiting, or if you feel totally drained and confused, these are clues you have heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Get to a cool, dim place, put a cool, damp cloth on your forehead, and try to drink water (with the chlorine filtered out).  Remember:

Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the noonday sun.

~ Rudyard Kipling

2.  Protect your skin. If you don’t want to cover it, at least wear some sunscreen. There are new generations of sunscreen in clear or opaque forms, or colored to function as makeup foundation. Many moisturizers and makeup products contain SPF 15 or higher for day use. Powdered mineral-based foundation makeups provide non-chemical SPF 15. If you’re wild to have tan skin, and you weren’t born with it, check out spray tanning or tanning moisturizers. Be aware that these do not provide sun protection, however, and skin cancer is a concern.  And remember to drink water to hydrate your skin. Support your skin by also eating foods that can help it stay moist and young-looking: fresh fruits, avocados, and dark greens like kale and baby romaine.  Get the organic versions if you can, and you’ll have more energy.

3.  Use common sense. Rest if you need to. Plan extra time to get enough sleep every day.  Nap if you need to.  And focus on thriving, throughout the month.

Next time: Keeping your energy up when it’s over 100!

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● Kebba Buckley Button is a stress management expert and the author of the award-winning book, Discover The Secret Energized You (http://tinyurl.com/b44v3br), plus the 2013 book, Peace Within:  Your Peaceful Inner Core, Second Edition (http://tinyurl.com/mqg3uvc).  She also has a natural healing practice and is an ordained minister.

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