6 Tips for a Healthy Summer
The summer season is officially open, which means great weather, vacations, beaches, volleyball, swimsuits, picnics, and soaking in the sun, as well as tons of sugary sweet treats, heat, dehydration, and excessive sun exposure. Lucky for you, we’ve put together some tips that will help you stay healthy and happy this summer!
Wear your SPF. We’ve all heard about how important it is to use sun protection when outdoors but let’s face it, there are still many people who only consider buying a bottle of sunscreen lotion when going to the sea (picture a facepalm emoji here). Yeah, I know, putting on sunscreen doesn’t add any extra romantic touch to your daily morning routine, but this step is necessary if you want to (no, we’re not gonna tell you about the importance of “keeping your skin young and smooth and beautiful”, or about fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, age sport, whatever) be healthy. I don’t want to exaggerate, but just check this NHS’ leaflet about the causes of skin cancer and you’ll see what we mean. So invest in a good sunscreen lotion with a high SPF factor and use it every day.
Drink more water. A novel advice that’s for sure, but, surprise-surprise, water is important. Fainting from dehydration doesn’t sound very cool, does it? So we think. NHS’s Eatwell Guide says we should drink six to eight glasses of fluid a day, so tea, juices, smoothies, and cold soups can all count. You may want to consume more than that if it’s particularly hot outside, though, or if you’re a sports enthusiast, pregnant/breastfeeding or have some other health conditions.
Graze on healthy snacks. In summer, all you need is quick, light and healthy foods that will get you through the heat, so it’s high time to stock up on fresh fruit and veg, which are, incidentally, the cheapest and tastiest right now. Nature’s ready-made snacks packed with goodness, fruit and veggies can be used to create lots and lots of delicious and nutritious snacks, from salads and fruit bars to sweet treats and smoothies (yum!). The best thing about smoothies is that they are not only filling and delicious but also very easy to make. All you need for an amazing smoothie is a chunky fruit or veg (like banana or avocado) to make it creamy, some other fruit for flavor (berries, kiwi, pear, etc.), and a liquid (water or plant-based milk). You can also mix in some superfoods like maca, spirulina, chlorella or chia seeds to make your smoothie even healthier. Then throw everything in a blender, blend it up and you get a perfect speedy breakfast!
Opt for summer-friendly clothing. It’s hot, it’s humid, and everyone and their dog are rushing to the shops to purchase a lighter attire. But before you succumb to the universal “yay it’s warm” euphoria, spare a thought to what’s actually best for wearing in summer. Consider looser cuts, neutral color palette and, most importantly, natural materials such as linen or cotton: these are more breathable and have a pleasant flow to them. Even better if the materials in question are ethically sourced, and for your outfit of choice to come from your wardrobe, charity shop, or a sustainable fashion brand that actually cares about the environment and welfare of their workers.
Spend more time outside. Summer in the northern hemisphere usually means that you won’t freeze your socks off should you decide to venture outside of your snug abode. (Even in Russia, yes we can’t believe this either.) Birds are singing, flowers are blooming, grass is greener, and, according to a popular saying that spurts positivity like My Little Pony - rainbows, there’s more to life when the sun comes out, so why don’t you use it to your advantage? Plus, a good dose of free vitamin D has never hurt anybody. Read a book on a bench, take a stroll in the park, partake in an open-air yoga session, have lunch al fresco, walk home from work instead of taking a bus; the opportunities are many and varied.
Practice body positivity. As the calendar moves closer to summer, you may find yourself bombarded by unhealthy messages that urge you to diet or exercise yourself to your “best summer bod” possible pointing to retouched photographs of unrealistically slim torsos. Now, there are many ways to answer these calls, but most of them would be unprintable, so we’ll just suggest that you question yourself on the point of it all. Is it enjoyable? Absolutely not. Is it sustainable? Hardly. Does an inch off your waistline help you develop as an individual or is it just the society’s sad attempt to shoehorn you into a certain size? You know the answer. So just act accordingly.