Summer’s here, so get ready for our top 20 tips for a healthy summer! It’s time to bask in the sun and recharge.
For some, summer is a cheat day that never ends, full of ice cream, alcohol, and indulgences.
But with the right choices, summer can be the healthiest time of the year (and the most fun).
Are you ready to recharge the healthy way?
From fun, free activities to scrumptious barbeque foods, here are our top 20 tips for a healthy summer.
7 Fun and Free Summer Activities
It wouldn’t be summer without a hefty dose of fun in the sun!
The best part is, you don’t have to break the bank to have a blast.
1. Hike Your Heart Out
The trails are calling!
Walking in nature is proven to reduce stress and boost mood.
In Japan, they take “forest bathing” seriously and there’s a ton of research on its many mental health benefits. (1)
Plus, hiking is a great form of light exercise. It’s good for the heart, mind, body, and soul.
So head to your nearby national and state parks or take a quick stroll at a local trail.
Your health will thank you for it!
2. Take a Walking Tour of a City
Hiking isn’t just for the trails…
You can also turn your city into an urban playground.
Even if you think you know your city like the back of your hand, chances are there’s a lot of interesting spots to discover.
Set aside a full day to explore all the unique nooks and crannies.
Before you know it, you’ll log some serious steps and have a great time along the way.
3. Play On a Playground
Believe it or not, playgrounds aren’t just for kids!
When you slide down slides, climb monkey bars and spin on spinny contraptions, you burn calories, work out your muscles and get your blood pumping.
You’ll have so much fun that you won’t even notice it’s exercise.
Best of all, “play therapy” relieves stress and supports mental health.
You’ll feel like a kid again.
4. Camp In Your Backyard
You don’t have to head to Timbuktu to have a campout.
As it turns out, your backyard is the perfect spot to pitch a tent.
Plus, you can deck out your private campground with all the comforts of home, like a real mattress and a laptop to watch movies.
Call it “glamping” at its finest.
5. Go for a Bike Ride
Bicycling is the perfect low-impact cardio exercise that’s easy on the joints.
If you’re trying to lose weight, it can definitely help with that, but if you’re just in it for a good time that’s okay too.
Bike around your city or head out to the countryside.
Just make sure to wear plenty of sunscreen, but more on that in a sec…
6. Paddle Around a Local Lake
Kayaks, canoes, rafts, and stand-up paddleboards…
Whatever your fun weapon of choice, it’ll get you outdoors, on the water, and under the sun.
After all, that’s where you belong in the summer!
If you don’t own a raft or canoe, see if you can rent one around town.
7. Become a Photographer for the Day
You don’t need fancy equipment to have fun taking photos.
As a matter of fact, your phone’s camera will do just fine.
Looking for that next gorgeous shot helps you see your surroundings in a new light.
It can give you a fresh perspective on your hometown and makes for great social media content.
5 Essential Sunscreen Tips for a Healthy Summer
As amazing as the sun feels on your skin, it can also harm your health.
Luckily, sunscreen is here to save the day!
But not all sunscreen is created equal…
Some brands contain nasty chemicals and others just aren’t strong enough or wear off too quickly.
At the same time, you’ll want to follow some basic rules to keep your skin safe.
Here’s how to stay safe with sunscreen this summer:
1. SPF 30 or Bust!
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, SPF 30 is the magic number. (2)
Anything less than that and too much radiation might sneak through.
SPF refers to sunscreen’s ability to block damaging ultraviolet UVB and UVA rays, which can cause sunburns and age the skin.
Worst of all, unprotected exposure to the sun’s rays can increase the risk of cancer. Yikes!
Don’t be fooled by high-SPF sunscreens like SPF 50 or even SPF 100.
Believe it or not, they don’t actually provide double or triple the protection.
Instead, what’s more, important is how often you apply it…
2. Reapply Sunscreen Every Couple of Hours
You should apply more sunscreen every two hours to stay protected.
This is especially important if you’re sweating heavily or swimming.
The best time to apply sunscreen is before you go out when there are fewer distractions and you can cover all those hard-to-reach places.
3. Go Natural with Mineral-Based Sunscreen
Unfortunately, most conventional sunscreens are loaded with controversial chemicals that harm the world’s coral reefs.
Plus, do you really want all those processed chemicals soaking into your pores?
Instead, opt for a mineral-based sunscreen that uses zinc and titanium to deflect the sun’s rays.
Best of all, mineral formulas are usually better tolerated by people with sensitive skin.
4. Wear Sunscreen Daily, Regardless of Your Plans
Most people only apply sunscreen if they’re heading outside for a long period of time.
However, think about all the time you spend in the sun when you’re running errands or going for a quick walk.
Over the course of the summer, all that sunshine time starts to add up.
That’s why it’s best to use sunscreen every day to make sure you stay protected.
By the time you’re 70, your skin will still look 30!
5. Stay Out of the Sun In the Middle of the Day
The sun’s rays are the strongest from noon to 3 pm, when the sun is more directly overhead.
That’s because the Earth’s atmosphere doesn’t filter the UV rays quite as well at these times.
Pay close attention the next time you’re in the sun in the middle of the day.
Chances are, you’ll notice how much stronger the sun really is. This is especially true if you live closer to the equator where the sun’s rays are the strongest.
5 Healthy Summer Foods for Barbeques
There’s something about the smell and sizzle of freshly cooked BBQ that’s so irresistible.
Summer BBQs bring the family together to make lifelong memories.
Unfortunately, some of the most common barbeque foods are also unhealthy, like processed hot dogs drenched in sugary condiments.
However, barbeque foods can also be vibrant, healthy, and delicious.
Here are some fresh ideas for your next outdoor get together:
1. Grilled-to-Perfection Salmon
Salmon is full of anti-inflammatory, brain-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
And as it turns out, salmon is positively delish on the grill!
Simply place the whole fillet on a sheet of tin foil, layer thinly sliced lemon slices on top, and squeeze lemon juice all over.
Next, season it with salt and pepper before wrapping the fillet in foil and closing the grill.
It’s mouthwateringly nutritious.
Kebabs are a healthy barbeque classic on a stick.
The best part of kebabs is that you can let your culinary creativity flow.
For protein, use chunks of chicken breast, grass-fed steak, or prawns. Heck, you can even use monkfish if you want to be a little more adventurous.
Next, alternate your protein of choice with veggies like onions, peppers, asparagus, or anything else that tickles your fancy.
Your family won’t be able to eat them fast enough!
3. Coleslaw with a Healthy Twist
Classic coleslaw is just cabbage soaked in mayonnaise, but not this summer…
Instead, use apple cider vinegar and grapeseed oil for the sauce.
For an extra nutritional boost, mix in some tarragon, celery, flat-leaf parsley, fennel, and a hint of green apple.
It’s heart-healthy and delicious!
4. Grilled Asparagus
No summer barbeque is complete without some grilled asparagus.
Simply trim off the bottoms of the stalks, toss it in extra-virgin olive oil, and sprinkle it with salt and pepper.
Last but not least, toss it in the grill basket for a few minutes until tender.
5. Garlic Mushrooms
Mushrooms add a classy touch to any summer barbeque.
Simply slice them and place them on a square of tin foil that’s lightly layered with olive oil.
Next, add a few cloves of crushed garlic, salt, and pepper, then fully wrap it in the tin foil square to lock in the flavor.
Cook for about 15 minutes and serve.
Now that you have a belly full of nutritious food, you’ll have plenty of energy for all those fun summer activities!
If you have any more questions about fun tips for a healthy summer, feel free to reach out to us at Complete Care Health Centers.
We’re happy to answer any questions you may have.
3 Hydration Tips for a Healthy Summer
We’ve all been there. Out and about and no glass of water in sight.
All that summer heat sure can make you thirsty!
In the short term, being thirsty is just a slight inconvenience.
However, dehydration can have serious health consequences on the kidneys, gut, and brain.
There’s no hard-and-fast rule for how much water to drink each day, but one report from the Food and Nutrition Board recommends that men should drink 3.7 liters a day and women should aim for about 2.7 liters. (3)
As a general rule of thumb, the more you sweat, the more you should drink.
Here are a few hydration tips for a healthy summer:
1. Take a Refillable Water Bottle With Your Everywhere You Go
If you don’t have water with you, you can’t drink it!
Rule #1 of summer hydration is to always have a refillable water bottle close at hand.
One-time use, plastic water bottles are terrible for the environment and terrible for your health.
Worst of all, they contain toxins called bisphenol-A (BPAs) that leach into the water and enter your body.
BPAs disrupt hormones and may even increase the risk of cancer, although more research is needed. (4)
2. Drink Tastier Water
Guess what? Water doesn’t have to be boring!
As a matter of fact, it can taste delicious if you squirt in some lemon juice or add mint and cucumber slices.
On a similar note, consider investing in an in-home water filtration system that purifies your tap water.
Not only will it be toxin-free, but it will also taste better.
Activated carbon filters remove chlorine and improve the smell and taste. Plus, they’re super affordable.
Reverse osmosis (RO) systems, on the other hand, can remove most other dangerous contaminants.
Plus, high-end RO systems even remineralize your water with healthy electrolytes like magnesium and calcium for better hydration.
3. Avoid Coffee and Alcohol
When it comes to summer hydration, what you don’t drink is just as important as what you do.
Drinks like coffee and alcohol are diuretics, meaning they cause you to pee more and can dehydrate you faster. (5)
Besides, caffeine and alcohol promote inflammation in the body.
If you need an energy boost, you’re much better off doing a quick workout instead.
After all, exercise is nature’s best stimulant!