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  • Writer's pictureToni Therrien

Easy Ways To Beat The Heat

This year has been one of the hottest on record. Sure, we could spend our lives in the pool or standing directly in front of the air conditioning vent and directly below the ceiling fan, but that will get old quickly. Here are some tips for beating the heat without breaking the bank.

Our first tip is all about water. We know we need to stay hydrated, but hot water on a hot day is just offensive. Plan ahead by filling water bottles half-way, then laying them on their side in the freezer. In the morning, you'll have water bottles that are ice on one side, and you can fill with water on the other. This ensures the water will stay cold longer. Coconut water is also known to help cool your body faster due to it's increased electrolytes. If you're not a huge fan of coconut water, there are many ways to make it delicious. For example, this awesome recipe for coconut water lemonade.

Knowing your body's pulse points can be a game changer. Pulse points are the areas of your body where the veins are close enough to the surface to feel your pulse. Your wrist and your neck are the most well-known, but the back of your knees, inside of your elbows, inner thighs, and ankles are also great

options. Place an ice pack on any one of

these and your entire body will feel cooler in minutes.

Peppermint has a high level of menthol, giving it great cooling properties. Simply chewing peppermint gum can cool you a bit. Peppermint oil has been shown to reduce headaches, especially from stress and anxiety. Rub a few drops into your temples and throw a few cucumber slices on your eyes for a spa experience in your living room.

Speaking of cucumbers, these green beauties are known for helping to hydrate. Toss a few in your ice water or eat them as a crunchy snack by the pool. Grab some hummus or everything cream cheese to dip and you've got lunch. Other cool down fruits are melon and pomegranate. Pomegranate is used often in middle eastern dishes, and with their climate being much the same as Arizona, taking a few hints from their cuisine is a great idea. Pineapple is also a cooling fruit, but remember, alcohol is dehydrating, so just because I mentioned pineapple doesn't mean you can drink Pina Coladas all day.

Lastly, let's talk chilies. This may seem counter-intuitive, but there is a reason that desert dwellers in other parts of the world cook with them. It's mostly about sweat. When you eat chilies, a signal is sent to your brain that you are hot. You start to sweat, which is your body's natural cooling mechanism. Serious Eats has some spicy summer recipes to add to your arsenal here.

So here we are, drinking coconut water lemonade with our feet up, peppermint oil on our temples, cucumbers on our eyes, enjoying a spicy snack. Sounds like a great afternoon to me!

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