Column: Staying cool in the growing Alabama heat

Published 12:03 pm Friday, May 6, 2022

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By Carey Reeder | Staff Writer

As the heart of the month of May approaches, so does the sticky and dreadful heat in Alabama. You would think after going to the University of Alabama for four years I would be used to the shift to hotter weather, but I am far from acclimated. I do not think anyone ever is fully prepared for a hot Alabama summer day.

This week in Chilton County temperatures reached 90 degrees and above, and it was not a pleasant time on the scorching softball fields. Memorial Day weekend has always been the time of year where I begin to think of how can I best combat the extreme heat during the summer.

Over the years, however, I have found some good tips that help me keep cool during the summer months. Always stay hydrated, no matter what. Even if you do not feel thirsty, I use the trick of always take one more sip of water after your last, just to get that extra bit of hydration.

Cold showers are also helpful. Instead of a hot and steamy shower, a cold shower can revitalize one’s body and refresh them throughout the day. Always try to stay inside air-conditioned buildings as much as possible. If you are at summer baseball tournament or out shopping this summer, stay inside the air conditioning as long as possible and take breaks inside as well.

The biggest tip I learned about staying cool during the summer in Alabama, is raising your fruit intake throughout the hotter months. Fruits like watermelon, peaches, oranges, strawberries and apples have natural flavors and help boost your energy in the hot sun.

Here in Chilton County, having an abundance of fruits available for residents is a huge plus in summer. I came to find out watermelon is almost a hack to getting through the summer.

It is not only delicious, but it helps cool down your body temperature and helps one hydrate.

Oranges and kiwis are the next best option, both having water-based juices that help hydrate those who consume it. Strawberries and apples both help too, and I am sure strawberries would be a go to summer time snack for many here in Chilton County.

Events like high school graduations are key events individuals need to be prepared for days in advance. If you know an event is taking place outside this summer, do not wait until the day of to start hydrating. Start a few days before the event to give the body a chance to take in that water and prepare for being outside in the high temperatures.

Nevertheless, the sun and high temperatures bring in a time where the children get out of school and families get to catch up on missed time spent together. While you are doing this summer, do not forget your water and fruit to stay hydrated and ready for those triple digit degree days.