The Great Heat Guide: with these tips you will get through the summer

1. How to stay cool on a hot day

Before you know it, ‘the beautiful summer will be over’, but until then there is a lot you can do to stay cool on hot days. What clothes are you wearing? Does eating ice cream help? And is it wise to drink coffee?

How do you cool your body down (fast)?

By cooling well-drained areas, such as your neck, with cold water or a wet towel. The temperature in your body is around 37 degrees Celsius. In hot weather, your internal thermostat goes to work to keep your interior at that temperature. Your blood vessels dilate so that more blood flows past the skin. This releases excess heat to the environment. You can help your body cool down.

Do not accidentally start with ice or cold water. How, where and for how long you cool is important for the ultimate effect. During the heat wave in 2017, we list the cooling recommendations.

Does paddling help?

Canoeing in a lake, swimming pool or, if necessary, in a dish bowl; you could hold for hours with your feet in the cold water. But it’s not a good idea to cool down. The cold pulls the blood vessels in the skin together and you achieve the opposite effect: your body can lose heat less well. The advice is to dip short.

Does it make sense to run your wrists under the tap?

Sure. Your wrists have good blood flow and arteries run through them. Unlike the smaller blood vessels in your body, they do not contract when the environment cools. Longer cooling has an effect there.

Just running your wrists under the tap doesn’t really help, says British sports physiologist Alan Ruddock. According to him, it is better to keep the whole hand under water.

Does an afternoon nap help?

A nap after lunch does not necessarily cool you. But such a powernap can be very nice to get rid of the heavy, dull feeling that people often have when it is hot. The body cools itself all day and it costs energy. Moreover, hot, clammy nights are not conducive to a good night’s sleep. With a mini-siesta you can boost your energy level again. Set your alarm clock a maximum of half an hour later, and you will remain in the light phases of sleep and you will wake up rested again.

In Spain, the siesta takes care of that residents suffer from massive sleep deprivation, saw the then Spain correspondent Merijn de Waal.

What kind of clothes are best to wear? reading questions

Light clothing keeps you cool. Think of wide-legged fluttering pants and basketball tops with strong armholes. The air layer between your skin and clothes – which quickly heats up or becomes full of sweat – can then be refreshed. This is great because the ventilation means that your body heat does not get stuck in your clothes.

Wearing long-sleeved, wide-legged clothing may not sound appealing, but it does help protect your skin from the sun’s rays.

Is a black T-shirt warmer than a white T-shirt?

Black or white? A black shirt gets warmer in the sun than a white one, but that does not automatically mean you will feel cooler in the lighter clothes. Researchers found out why Bedouins in the desert wear black robes and published their findings in the scientific journal Nature. They found that the Bedouins in the black robes get as warm as when they wear traditional clothes in white.

White can reflect light, but it also lets more radiation through, it does not matter to your feeling of warmth whether you are wearing white or black.

Anyone who believes that children are adequately protected from the sun by wearing a white T-shirt is mistaken. The NRC answers nine questions about safe tanning in this article from the archive


We know that it is important to drink enough on hot days. But what is enough? Does the cold beer count on the terrace and is it better to consume caffeinated beverages or not?

How much should you drink in hot weather?

Drink at least 2 liters of water, or even more if you are over 70 years old. On hot days you sweat more and then you need to drink extra to rebuild the moisture loss. The nutrition center recommends water, tea and coffee without sugar as the best thirst quenches. For people who like to sit on the terrace, there is bad news: that cold beer or a glass of rosé does not count in your drinking quota.

You can easily check if you are well hydrated by changing the color of your after each bathroom break to study urine.

Does it help to drink ice cold drinks?

Cold drinks give a pleasant cool feeling, NRC wrote earlier. During an experiment, people indicated that they were less thirsty after a cold drink (5 degrees Celsius) than after drinking hot water (22 degrees Celsius). The name showed that it does not make any difference to the temperature in the body. It is probably the cold receptors in the mouth that send signals to the brain, meaning ‘pleasant’.

Do you cool off with hot drinks?

Cooling off with hot tea is really such a tip from grandma’s time. But does it really work? The effect is not great, but it is there. Drinking a hot beverage makes you sweat extra, confirmed sports physiologist Alan Ruddock in this article on cooling down from 2017. The evaporation of that moisture cools your body. “But it does not help in humid and stuffy weather,” Ruddock remarked. “Sweat can not evaporate.”

Is it harmful to consume caffeine at high temperatures?

Although caffeine causes fluid to leave the body faster, it does not cause you to lose more fluid. You have to drink a lot of it to pee more, explained Werner Hagens, an expert at RIVM within the heating plan, in this live blog about the heat wave in 2019. “Normally, you have already ingested so much fluid that it no longer matters.”

What about alcohol?

‘Be moderate with alcohol in the heat’ is a well-known piece of advice. But why really? Unlike caffeine, alcohol has a diuretic effect. The knowledge institute Trimbos says that alcohol inhibits the hormone that ensures that your kidneys hold enough fluid so that you continue to go to the toilet. It promotes dehydration.

To eat

There is a reason why we do not feel like solid food in hot summers. What does heat do to your appetite? And should you consume extra salt if you sweat a lot?

Do you cool down when you eat ice cream?

Button. Food makes you hot. Your body starts working and your body temperature rises. So ice cream and fruit ice cream provide no comfort. Ice cream with as little sugar as possible could help, according to an old experiment that science editor Wim Köhler once mentioned.

What is the effect of heat on your appetite?

When it is hot, many people prefer a soup to a large plate of hot food. Not surprisingly, because hot weather causes decreased appetite, Renger Witkamp, ​​professor of nutrition and pharmacology at Wageningen University, told NRC earlier. Your body uses this ingenuity for two reasons: First, you need less energy in hot summers to maintain your body temperature, and in addition, eating food causes a temperature rise. In hot weather, the body lowers the tendency to eat, even though the effects are minor, according to Witkamp.

Do you prefer hot or cold dishes?

It makes no difference to your own heating experience. Every bite you take increases your digestion and gives off heat. What you eat and whether your food is hot or cold makes no difference. How much you eat matters: The more you eat, the hotter you get.

Is it important to get extra salt?

You will certainly lose more salt if you sweat all day long, but the active replenishment is not necessary with a normal diet, according to the Nutrition Center.

By drinking more, you are removing sodium from your body and it can be dangerous.There is no excuse for still opening a bag of chips.

Leave a Comment