The Weather Network is expecting a hot and dry summer across Western Canada. If the last few days are any indication we are definitely in for a hot one! Many of us Vancouverites spend the winter months complaining about rain and counting down the days until we see beautiful blue skies and warm weather. As much as we love the summer, many of us aren't quite prepared and our health can suffer! Luckily, New Westminster Naturopathic Physician Dr. Allana Polo is here to address some summer health concerns.
"Summertime is my favourite time of year, the sun is shining and people are outdoors getting active," says Dr. Polo. "As fabulous as Vancouver summers are, they also brings quite a few common health concerns that can be dangerous if left untreated. Luckily most of these concerns can be prevented before even happening and if you miss preventing them, there are some great natural remedies that will get you back feeling 100%."
6 Common Summer Health Concerns And How to Prevent Or Treat Them:
Prevent It: Plan out your outside time by looking up the UV index for your city by the hour. This is a great website for doing that. Seek shade or plan to be indoors during peek UV times and enjoy sun time during hours where the UV Index is lower.
Home Remedy For Sunstroke: Drink lots of fluids including water and beverages like coconut water that are high in electrolytes, potassium and magnesium. Place cold towels on the neck.
2. Sun Induced Headaches-
Prevent It: Stay hydrated and wear hats that will block the sun from your eyes and UV protecting sunglasses.
Home Remedy For Sun Induced Headaches: Rehydrate your body. Spend time in a cool dark room with a cool compress over your eyes.
3. Mosquito Bites-
Prevent It: Make natural bug spray using oils that repel mosquitos which include cinnamon oil, lemon, eucalyptus and citronella. Eat foods high in vitamin B1 which are thought to change our smell and repel female mosquitos.
Home Remedy For Mosquito Bites: Dot bites with oil of oregano or tea tree oil. Rub with a wedge of lemon. Reduce inflammation with ice.
Prevent It: Avoid peek UV index times and stay covered in sun shelters, with cool loose clothing and sun hats.
Home Remedy For Sunburn: Take a cool bath with oatmeal or baking soda. Apply aloe vera gel. Lay cool compresses that have been soaked in black tea on the affected areas of your skin.
5. Food poisoning-
Prevent It: Practice food safety and food handling best practices when preparing food for BBQ's and other summertime parties. Take note of how long food has been sitting out and if it's been properly chilled or heated.
Home Remedy For Food Poisoning: Drink ginger tea. Don't take immodium, let your body pass it. Alkanize your digestive system by mixing 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with hot water and drinking. Load up on probiotics to restore the harmony of your gut health.
6. Bacterial Infection from public hot tubs or pools
Prevent It: Avoid going in the water if you have an open cuts or sores. Know the hot tubs you are using and how they are cared for. If they aren't cared for properly, avoid them.
Home Remedy For Bacterial Infection: Treat topically with natural antibacterial agents like tea trea oil and oil of oregano. Treat internally by consuming garlic and probiotics.