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It’s hot again. That means sweating excessively, fanning yourself, and paying exorbitant electricity bills. Every summer people turn up their air conditioning to try to cool down their homes, but using that amount of electricity comes with a hefty price.
Try these 14 ways to stay cool this summer without emptying your wallet:
1. Stay Hydrated
Water is a natural cooling system. As you drink water, your body uses the water to cool down. Drink water even when you don’t feel thirsty because you become dehydrated before you feel like you need a drink.
The best measurement for your water intake is your urine color. Straw-colored to transparent-yellow urine shows that you are hydrating your body. If it is too clear or too dark, then you need to rethink your water intake.
2. Eat Differently
During the summer, try to eat lighter and more frequently. The digestion process produces heat, which can lead to a slight increase in body temperature. Smaller meals require less digesting; thus, less heat is generated.
See also: 9 Grab-and-Go Protein Snack Ideas
3. Use Your Basement More
Heat rises. Because of this, your basement will be cooler than your upstairs. If you can, move your bedroom, office area, or living area downstairs during the hottest months this summer.
4. Wear Cotton Clothes
Cotton is the best material to wear during the summer, mostly because it’s a natural fabric. Because of this, it’s lighter and has better air circulation, which allows you to perspire better and cool yourself down.
Also remember to wear light colors. Light colors reflect heat and light while dark colors absorb the heat. You want to reflect light so you don’t collect more heat.
5. Hang Wet Sheets in Front of Windows
Use the hot wind to your advantage by hanging a wet sheet in front of your window. The moisture in the sheet will cool the air that passes through it. This cool air will then be circulated around your home.
6. Fan a Bowl of Ice
In the same vein as the previous idea, set a bowl of ice in front of a fan. The cool wind will spread throughout the room and lower the temperatures. Although this idea uses electricity, it is cheaper than running the AC throughout the entire house, especially if you’re only in one room of the house and only need that room cooled.
7. Create Circulation
If the air in your room stays stagnant, it will feel hot. Create cross ventilation in rooms so that the air constantly moves around. Play around with your fans. Use one to pull air into the house and use another to push hot air out. Strategically place the fans so you always have a cross breeze and can feel cool wind on you instead of sitting in stagnant, warm air.
8. Turn Off and Unplug Appliances
Appliances generate heat when they are in use. Just like with your metabolic system, heat is a byproduct of electricity. Stop appliances from generating heat by unplugging them or turning them off. Of course necessary appliances like the fridge should always be operating.
9. Keep Your Curtains Drawn
Open curtains let the sun into your house, turning it into a pseudo greenhouse. The heat will stay in your home and you will come home to an uncomfortable temperature. Stop the heat from entering your home by drawing your curtains closed before leaving for the day.
10. Drink Hot Fluids
Hot fluids can actually help your body cool down, rather than heat it up. Drinking hot fluids increases your sweat levels. When sweat evaporates, it takes heat from your body, cooling you down. The small amount of heat contained in a hot drink can actually have a cooling effect rather than a heating effect on your body.
11. Eat Spicy Foods
Just like with hot drinks, eating spicy foods can help you cool down. The spicy food will increase your perspiration especially around your face and mouth. In turn, this will cause energy to leave your body as the sweat evaporates and cools you down.
12. Freeze Your Sheets
It sounds crazy, but try it sometime. In the morning, fold your sheets and put them in your freezer. If you don’t want them smelling like frozen pizza, simply put them in an air-tight bag. About twenty minutes before you go to bed, put your sheets onto your bed. Your bed will be nice and cool when you lay down to go to sleep.
13. Use Your Ceiling Fan Properly
Ceiling fans have two ways that they can rotate. Clockwise pulls air up to distribute heat better for those cold winter months. During the summer, change your fan to rotate counter-clockwise to push air down and create a breeze in your house.
The easiest way to check if your fan is moving the right way is to stand beneath it. If you feel a cool breeze, it’s turning the proper way. If you don’t, then see if you can find the switch to change the rotation.
14. Do Nothing
Sound easy? Being active in the summer generates heat as your body moves and uses energy. Doing nothing allows your body to rest and not generate heat. You might not be able to do it for your entire summer, but if you want to cool off, try sitting back, relaxing, and doing nothing.