As temperatures soar, here are 15 ways to keep your cool in the heat.
1. Eat small meals and eat more often. The larger the meal, the more metabolic heat your body creates breaking down the food. Avoid foods that are high in protein, which increase metabolic heat.
2. Run your wrists under a cold tap for five seconds each every couple of hours. Because a main vein passes through this area, it helps cool the blood.
3. Eat spicy food. Although this may be the last thing you fancy in hot weather, curries and chillies can stimulate heat receptors in the mouth, enhance circulation and cause sweating, which cools the body down.
4. Take a tepid bath or shower just below body temperature, especially before bedtime. Although a cold shower might sound more tempting, your body generates heat afterwards to compensate for the heat loss.
5. Wear lightweight, light-coloured cotton clothes. Heat is trapped by synthetic fibres, but cotton absorbs perspiration and its evaporation causes you to feel cooler. The light colours reflect the sun’s radiation.
6. While you’re out, keep the house curtains drawn to stop it heating up like a greenhouse.
7. You may be longing for a cold beer or a chilled white wine spritzer. But you should avoid alcohol because it dehydrates the body. You are better off with mineral water or low-sugar fizzy drinks. Also, avoid drinks with caffeine such as coffee and colas. These increase the metabolic heat in the body.
8. Women should replace their usual body moisturiser with a cooling aloe vera aftersun product to use morning and night. This will help lower your skin temperature.
9. Slow down and avoid strenuous activity which will stimulate your body and raise its core temperature. If you must go jogging, do it during the coolest part of the day, which is usually before 7am.
10. Get some Mentholatum Migraine Ice patches. These soft gel patches – designed to soothe headaches – come into their own during heatwaves as they instantly reduce skin temperature when applied. They can be found in chemists.
11. Drink chrysanthemum tea. Practitioners say chrysanthemum is a cooling herb which clears the head.
12. Sleep on a feather or down pillow with a cotton pillowcase. Synthetic pillows will retain heat.
13. The night before you go out for the day in the sun, roll some damp flannels up and pop them in the freezer. Take them with you in a plastic bag. Then, when you start to feel hot, unwrap them and place them over your face.
14. Ditch your duvet and sleep under a sheet instead. Even better, put your sheets in a plastic bag and stick them in the fridge a couple of hours before going to bed. As we fall asleep our body temperature lowers, which is why it’s difficult to sleep in hot weather. Cold sheets straight from the fridge should help you sleep better.
15. Sit back, close your eyes and picture cold weather or snow. Research has shown that the body reacts to these daydreams, reducing its overall temperature.