The Summer Solstice: the Start of Avoiding Heat!

22/06/2011
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The summer solstice falls on June  22nd this year. It is the tenth solar terms of the 24 Chinese solar terms, marking the day of the longest daytime and shortest nighttime. Starting the summer solstice, the days begin to draw out. There’s a saying that goes like this: “After eating noodles on the summer solstice day (a seasonal tradition), daylight gets shorter day by day”.

The Summer Palace on Summer Solstice

 After the summer solstice, temperature rises in north China and there’s plenty of sunshine and rainfalls, which is good for the growth of crops. While areas in the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River are in rainy season, during which persistent and heavy rains are common. The hottest days of summer begin after the summer solstice. They come in three stages – the first, second and third period of the hot season, with each period lasting for ten days.

How to avoid heat stroke

1. Carry water with you and sip it throughout the day. Dehydration can set in and we don’t even realize it until we begin to feel thirsty!

2. Pace yourself when working outdoors, exercising or just having fun. Those who participate in regular exercise over time, allowing their bodies to adjust to hot conditions, may better tolerate exercise on hot days.

3. Replace salts and minerals with electrolytes or other power drinks that have potassium. Avoid drinks with large amounts of sugar. Dehydration can stress the heart and impair the kidneys’ ability to maintain the correct level of fluids and balance of electrolyte. Electrolytes are charged elements-like potassium, sodium, phosphorous and chloride-essential for the normal function of every cell in the body.

4. Wear lightweight clothing the lighter the colored clothing (white, being ideal) the more sunlight is reflected away from you. Darker colors absorb the light and heat.

5. Use common sense Schedule your outdoor activities to avoid the hottest parts of the day, and use a buddy system if necessary to keep watch on those at high risk.