July and August are much anticipated months in Toronto. The summer season is short- optimizing your health can help you make the most our our short but ever so sweet summer.
Here are the top 5 tips from naturopathic doctors in Toronto to help you stay on your A-game.
1. Continue to supplement with vitamin D
You are probably thinking that because the sun is out longer, you are getting more vitamin D.
However, how much vitamin D your body synthesizes from the sun depends on a few factors: how much time is spent out side and at what time of day, the amount of skin exposed to the sun and the colour of your skin.
In order to get a good dose of vitamin D from the sun you need to be outside, in minimal clothing (bathing suit), when the sun is high in the sky.
You are synthesizing vitamin D in your skin if your shadow cast by the sun is shorter than your height.
If you have darker skin, you require more time in the sun to get the same amount of vitamin D as someone with lighter skin.
2. Get lot’s of vitamin “N”
You’ve never heard of vitamin N? It’s vitamin “nature”! Summer is a great time to get outside.
Time spent in natural settings:
- Improves mental health.
- Provides an opportunity for cognitive rejuvenation.
- Reduces blood pressure.
- Reduces cortisol our “stress” hormone.
- Increases our parasympathetic tone- the “rest and restore” part of our nervous system.
3. Hydrate with water
We inherently need more water in the summer. Our bodies lose more water in the warmer months- we sweat more, and for some, consumption increases of diuretics like iced coffee and alcohol (patio season!).
Aim to drink 2-3 litres of water daily with these tips:
- Start each morning with a big glass of water (option to add lemon).
- For every cup of coffee or alcoholic drink have one big glass of water.
4. Take advantage of the local harvest
Local produce is in abundance during the summer months. Local food tastes better and it’s better for you and the environment.
Bite into summer by purchasing local food at:
- Farmer’s markets.
- Basket programs.
- Grocery stores.
- Farm stands outside the city.
5. Take it easy
With all of the additional daylight hours summer brings, schedules can fill up as we make the most of our short summer.
It’s important to open up some time to relax and reset.
After a busy weekend or travel make time to take it easy by:
- Working from home (if possible).
- Plan an additional day off as a home reset day.
- Saying “no” when necessary.
Yours in Health,