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How to Stay Hydrated and Cool in the Summer as we Age

With the arrival of summer, I know many of us are spending more and more time outside. The allure of warmer weather, longer days, and a wide range of enjoyable outdoor activities make the summer season an ideal time for people to embrace the great outdoors. Whether you are spending your days gardening, engaging in backyard barbecues and pool parties, or playing your favorite outdoor sports like pickleball or golf, the additional time spent in the sun and heat can be hard on our aging bodies.

Staying hydrated and keeping cool is particularly crucial during the summer months when higher temperatures and increased physical activity can lead to dehydration more quickly. By following these easy tips on how to stay hydrated and cool in the summer as we age, you can keep your body functioning optimally while still safely enjoying your favorite outdoor activities.

How to Stay Hydrated as We Age

Staying hydrated is of utmost importance for everyone, but especially for women over the age of 50. As we age, our bodies are at an increased risk of dehydration. Adequate hydration plays a crucial role in maintaining our overall health and well-being as it helps support proper digestion, joint lubrication, and temperature regulation. Additionally, staying hydrated can alleviate common health concerns such as constipation, urinary tract infections, and cognitive decline. Plus, my skin never looks better than when I am putting in a conscious effort to consume enough water!

By prioritizing hydration, we can optimize physical and cognitive functions, enhance energy levels, and promote healthy aging. Staying hydrated doesn’t have to be a complicated task. There are several easy and practical ways to ensure you stay hydrated throughout the day. Below are some of my favorite tips and tricks for making sure I am hydrated in the hot summer months.

My Favorite Ways to Stay Hydrated

  1. Carry a Water Bottle. First and foremost, make it a habit to carry water with you wherever you go. Invest in a water bottle or tumbler you can keep in your car (like a Yeti, Simple Modern, Hydro Flask, or Stanley Cup) that will prevent your ice from melting and keep things cold throughout the day. Having water readily available will serve as a reminder to sip regularly.
  2. Eat food with high water content. Incorporate hydrating foods into your diet, such as fruits like watermelon and grapes, and vegetables like cucumbers and lettuce. Soups, broths, and smoothies can also contribute to your overall hydration. Avoid excessive consumption of caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, as they can have a diuretic effect.
  3. Get an extra hydration boost from your water by adding electrolyte packets. I like to add electrolyte packets into my water so I can ensure I am getting the optimal benefits from my water. You can also find flavored electrolyte packets, or if you find plain water boring, infuse it with fresh fruits or herbs with a bottle like one for a refreshing flavor.
  4. Schedule it into your day. Add drinking water into your to do list or set reminders on your phone or use apps that can help you track your water intake.
  5. Keep your skin hydrated. Don’t forget about keeping your skin hydrated. I like to keep a facial mist on hand for hot outdoor activities. I also incorporate a moisturizer into your daily skincare routine. Choose a product that suits your skin type and contains hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid. Apply the moisturizer after cleansing to lock in moisture and create a protective barrier on your skin. It’s also beneficial to use a humidifier in dry environments to add moisture to the air and prevent your skin from drying out.
  6. Make popsicles at home. Popsicles are not only a delicious summer treat but can also help you stay hydrated and cool during hot weather. Popsicles come in a variety of flavors and can be a fun way to satisfy your sweet cravings while keeping cool and hydrated at the same time. Just be mindful of the sugar content and opt for healthier, natural options whenever possible or try making your own at home.

How to Stay Cool as We Age

Hot temperatures and prolonged time in the harsh summer weather can affect our mood, sleep quality, energy levels, and overall health. Fortunately, staying cool in the summer doesn’t have to be a complicated or expensive endeavor. There are several easy and practical ways to beat the heat and maintain a comfortable temperature. By adopting these easy and practical strategies, you can stay cool, comfortable, and beat the summer heat without much hassle.

Tips for Staying Cool in Hot Weather

  1. Invest in a portable fan. Portable fans help to circulate the air and create a comfortable environment. I love small ones that you can keep in your purse or your car for quick access on hot days, but they also make ones that you can wear around your neck or hang from your neck like a necklace.
  2. Wear breathable fabrics like linen. Dressing in lightweight, breathable fabrics such as cotton or linen to allows for better airflow and moisture evaporation.
  3. Buy UPF or sun protective clothing. UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) measures the amount of UVB and UVA rays that can reach your skin through a piece of clothing. Anything higher than UPF 30 qualifies for the Skin Cancer Foundations Seal of Recommendation, but I like shopping for UPF 50+. I wrote an entire blog post about the benefits of UPF clothing and my favorite pieces here. Make sure you remember to apply sunscreen, as well. I talk all about the best sunscreens here.
  4. Use a sun hat or parasol when outside. Keeping the sun off of your skin and creating shade makes a world of difference when you are in the bright sun. Be sure to visit this post to see my favorite sun hats. Parasols are an even better tool because they can shield more sun than a hat. You can find small umbrellas built-in UPF that can fit into your purse.
  5. Have a sunshade in your car. Getting into a scorching hot car in the summer months can be absolutely brutal. Using a sunshade in your windshield to shield the sun from heating up your car interior is an easy switch that makes a large impact.
  6. Switch your bedding and sheets to cooling ones along with your pillow(s) if needed. The summer heat isn’t only annoying in the day time. High temperatures can affect our sleep patterns and overall comfort throughout the night as well. I recommend using cooling bedding and pillows to get the best sleep possible.
  7. Avoid the sun from 10am-2pm. Seek out air-conditioned environments such as malls, libraries, or community centers during the hottest parts of the day. Try to schedule your outdoor activities like golf matches or hikes during the morning or evening when temperatures are not at their highest.

Shop More Products To Help You Stay Hydrated and Cool in the Summer:

If it’s warmed up where you are, what do you do to stay hydrated?

20 Comments

  1. My backpacking son just got back from Thailand this morning. It was in the 90’s and humid every day. He threw away his heavyweight and/or polyester blend clothing and replaced it with lightweight fabrics in cotton or linen and was much more comfortable. Natural fibers and water is the way to go.

    1. What an adventure he had. I totally agreed about natural fibers!

  2. Thank you for recommending Ilia Lip Wrap Hydrating Mask. I have an autoimmune that makes my skin/lips dry. There is a drawer in my bathroom with about 15 different types of chap stick or lip gloss/repair available. This is the first product I’ve tried that I don’t wake up during the night to replace it. It hydrates so well that even when I awake I don’t feel the urge to immediately put something on my lips. I will be forever grateful.

    1. I’m so happy you like it. I try others and always return to the Ilia.

  3. Thank you, Jennifer, for all these tips for staying hydrated. So very, very important! I’m going to add another tip here, and that is magnesium. Electrolyte solutions frequently consist of calcium, sodium and potassium, but don’t always contain magnesium. Some of us suffer from muscle cramps in the hot weather, or any weather for that matter – and I’ve found magnesium supplements to be a big help in eliminating those horrific Charley Horses and the like.

    1. Great idea, Nan. I take magnesium every night to help with leg cramps but hadn’t thought of it in connection with hydration.

  4. I hadn’t thought of a cooling mattress cover. I’ve been using the same cover year-round. Night waking is a problem for me, as I overheat. Does anyone have one, and does it work?

    Also, I hope you’ll give some suggestions for comfortable sleepwear for summer.

    1. I still swear by and wear the Soma Cool Nights but my daughter is a fan of another brand so I may try them.

      1. Please let us know how the other brand would, too

  5. Christine Arquilla says:

    I am now carrying my YETI around with me everywhere. I also have added “Drink Water” reminders on my phone. I’ve also reduced the amount of caffeine and sugary drinks I consume in favor of fruit-infused water. Besides avoiding health problems my skin is looking better and better! Thanks for all your great advice, Jennifer!

    1. I take my Hydro flask everywhere too. I agree, the more water I drink the better my skin looks.

  6. When you’re home and trying to drink more water, do what my husband does — he has a clear glass (covered) pitcher that he fills with water in the morning, leaves on the counter, and drinks from all day. It’s been eye-opening to him to see how little he actually drinks. But, do yourself a favor and don’t drink it all at 9 PM to catch up!

    1. LOL, I have learned that one the hard way. I was counting the number of bottles I consumed and if it wasn’t enough, I would slam it down in the evening. Up ALL night!

  7. All great reminders for all of us. I’ve really been working on drinking more water, especially while golfing. We don’t usually have extreme heat here but it doesn’t take much to feel it.

    1. I almost never feel thirsty, but they say by the time you do, you’re dehydrated.

  8. This subject of hydration is so important for us. So many of my friends don’t drink enough water and they do have issues because of it. Great post. Thanks for bring it to our attention

    1. I’m working really hard to drink more water. It seems to come naturally for some, but I have to constantly remind myself.

      1. I did not like water for a long time. I had to put lemon or some flavoring in it. Actually I started by drinking flavored soda water, but now I just drink plain water some times with lemon or cucumber slices.
        It took a while but I like it now.

  9. I have a TORRAS neck fan and use it all the time. It was a little more pricey but has good reviews. I’ve had mine for a year and use it all the time both inside and outside. It is the only one that I found that blows air both up and down around your neck. It has three speeds, but I usually only need the lowest speed, and the charge lasts for a long, long time. Love it.

    1. Thanks Pam! That sounds like a great one!

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