Stay Cool This Summer

by Nick Livermore

All too often, I visit a friend’s house or go somewhere and the whole time I am there all I can think about is how hot it is. Is their AC broken? When I thought about it, AC is horrendously expensive and it’s chewing through power.

For the sake of the planet and your own sanity, here are some cheap, clean ways you can stay cool this summer – without having to go in search of a thermostat.

Shade — In some places, there can be a 15 degree difference between the shade and direct sunlight. Plant trees around your house, hang awnings on large windows and keep the shades closed. Heading to the mall? Find a tree or park next to a building.

Fans — Personal fans are a great way to keep cool, as they use less electricity and can be directed towards you. Not at home? Look for fans when you walk into a room and position yourself accordingly!

Turn it off — TVs, Computers and lights not only use electricity, but they also give off heat. Turn them off when not in use.

Eat Chilled Food — Just like you eat soup in the winter, you should prepare seasonally appropriate summer dishes. Eat lots of fruit, salad and other uncooked meals. Keep your meals small and light.

Water — Drinking ice water is a great way to cool off, and staying hydrated is essential to summer health.

Clothes — This should go without saying, but people just can’t seem to figure it out. There is a big difference between a 100% cotton T-shirt and a loose-fitting, breathable fabric. Shoes and hats trap lots of heat, so avoid them when you can!

Insulate — This is especially vital in your house. Make sure all windows are closed and seal tightly to prevent any cool air from escaping and heat from entering. Check your roof – poor insulation will make your heating and cooling expenses go through the roof!

Timing — Do your errands and outside activity in the morning or in the evening. The temperature is the hottest in the afternoon, so plan on staying inside then.

Take a dip! — A cold shower or wetting your hair is a great way to quickly bring down your body temperature. And sweat is your friend – as it evaporates, it cools your skin.

Ice — Ice can be invaluable in the summer. Place a bowl of ice water in front of a drafty window for an all-natural A/C or put a bag of ice on your pressure points for an instant cool.

Have any other tips on how to stay cool this summer? We would love to hear from you!

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