Some of the common symptoms of heat stoke include, "sudden rise in body temperature, rapid heartbeat which may be either strong or weak, rapid or shallow breathing, unconsciousness, lack of sweat, throbbing headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting and seizures," says Dr. Raman Abhi, Additional Director (Internal Medicine) at Fortis Memorial Research Institute in the capital.
Tips to Beat the Heat
Here are some tips to keep in mind to beat the heat and stay safe -
1. Avoid Direct Sunlight
Avoid or minimise exposure to sunlight from 10 AM to 3 PM. Those are the peak hours of the sun's strength. Limit your time in the direct sun to no more than half an hour.
2. Avoid Sudden Temperature Changes
Avoid sudden temperature changes like shuttling between a cool environment to an extremely hot one. Shut off the cooling to bring yourself down to the room temperature before stepping out in the sun.
3. Check Electrolytes
"During summers, it is very important for you to maintain your body electrolyte and fluid levels. In order to prevent being attacked by the heat, make sure you drink plenty of water or have something like lemonade before you step out. In fact, you can make an oral rehydrating solution for yourself which should be consumed if you plan to stay outdoors for a long time," says Dr. Simran Saini, a Delhi-based nutritionist. Adequate amount of salt is important too as it helps in water retention.
4. Hydrate and Hydrate
Keep yourself well hydrated to escape the summer heat. Make water your best friend. If you need some sprucing up, add fresh citrus fruits or herbs to make flavoured water. Or try all-time favourite Indian summer drinks like aam panna, nimbu paani and chaas. It is advisable to limit your alcohol consumption during these months as it reduces your body's capacity to retain water.
5. Workout in Moderation
Excessive physical activity and prolonged exposure to the unforgiving rays of the sun may cause a heat stroke. Don't overwork yourself in the gym. Remember you need your energy to beat the heat.
6. Include Citrus Fruits and Seasonal Veggies
One's diet plays an important role to stay safe from the heat. Avoid eating spicy and fermented foods. Eat light and in smaller portions. Load up on citrus fruits because you will need vitamin C to build your immunity and provide you your dose of antioxidants. Include veggies like summer squash, gourds, lettuce and other cooling ingredients in your daily diet.
7. Watch What You Wear
Your attire plays an important role too. If you wear loose cotton clothes which enables easy ventilation, your body temperature will stay normal and you will feel comfortable. Avoid synthetic fabrics or silk, satin, etc.
8. Shower and Stay Clean
If you feel extremely hot, go in for a cold water shower to cool down. This is the easiest way to feel refreshed instantly. Staying clean is very crucial during these hot months as it will prevent various infections.
Summer heat in Delhi and NCR seems to be increasing day by day. It's only April, but temperatures have already crossed 40 degree C, leading to various cases of heat stroke and other problems across the region. The only way to beat the heat in these summer months is to be mindful of what you eat and to follow a few basic tips to ensure that you are taking care of yourself and staying hydrated. Heat stroke is a condition caused due to overheating of your body as a result of prolonged exposure to high temperatures. The normal body temperature is 37 degree C, and if it rises above 40 degree C, it can cause severe health problems, affecting various internal organs such as the kidney and the heart.