Summer, summer, summertime. Cancel your Netflix and your cable. Unplug your TV. It’s time to get your summer on!
Whether your style is camping, road-tripping, relaxing at the pool, or staying up late for fireworks on the 4th of July, take the best care of yourself and make the most out of the short summer months.
Lots of us launch into summer with go-go-go plans. Inevitably, we come crashing down mid-July. We’re worn out, red as a lobster, and a few pounds heavier thanks to extra burgers and beverages at the weekly barbecues. 😉
For real, summer should be when the best you comes out. Fresh air, sunshine, and get-togethers aplenty. Here are some tips for staying in the moment and letting your health flourish (just like that garden you planted).
Fun in the Sun
Summertime = sunshine = vitamin D3 (and sunburns). The most enjoyable aspects of summer are the long, warm days. But the sun is good for more than just adding some color to the white legs we’ve been hiding all winter long. We humans need the sun’s light spectrum to maintain good health, especially by creating vitamin D3 through our skin. This vitamin helps maintain a healthy heart, a thriving immune system, a positive mental perspective, glowing skin, and even longevity.
The best way to access this all-important vitamin is by getting direct exposure to sunlight, eating grass-fed beef, and taking cod liver oil. That’s not to say you shouldn’t be cautious with the amount of time that you—and especially your kiddos—spend in the sun. But, unfortunately, sunscreen isn’t the best way to moderate your exposure. Those seemingly innocent spray-on sunscreens can come with a plethora of harmful chemicals, including oxybenzones, phthalates, and more. And once the heat of the sun causes you to sweat, you can absorb these foreign chemicals.
The best means for sun protection is to take Standard Process Calcium Lactate and Cataplex F. Vitamin F mobilizes calcium from the bloodstream into the tissues, allowing it to protect your skin and prevent an overdose on vitamin D. Another simple way to moderate your exposure is to cover up with a hat and very light clothing. But if you absolutely must use sunscreen, take the advice of products with a high SPF (over 50), spray-ons, towelettes/powders, and anything that blocks both UVA and UVB rays.
Sunburns will slow you down, but aloe vera and apple cider vinegar can be effective in reducing the accompanying discomfort.
Is there anything better than summertime barbecues and frequent trips to the ice cream parlor? Still, that doesn’t mean you want to miss the seasonal fresh fruits and veggies that summer puts at your fingertips. The grocery stores and local farmers’ markets are overflowing with fresh produce—and you can grow your own. See if your municipality offers garden plots that you and your family can cultivate and harvest. Creating a garden and then eating its bounty together is the definition of quality family time.
Try using the summer months to get your kiddos to eat more freshly picked fruit and veggies. They offer so much more nutritional value than produce that’s been harvested and shipped (sometimes weeks before) prior to full ripeness. Freshly picked produce contains 30 percent more nutrient value than produce that’s even three days removed from picking.
With all the activities of summer, you’re going to need the extra nutrient push! Eat light and fresh, and don’t forget about healthy proteins.
Other than snowboarding, what can’t you do in the summer? It’s the perfect time for family bike rides along the river, hikes, camping, swimming, kite-flying, festival-strolling, running a 5K, or joining a summer sport league. But make sure that you don’t overdo it. You don’t want to find yourself injured, worn-out, or worse—tired of your summer. Whatever your activities, make them about fun and reconnection.
To keep up with everything, you’ll need to do a few things to keep going. First, be sure you get enough rest. Summer gives us more day than night, but your body still needs some R&R. If you’re starting a new activity or getting back into shape, take it slow. There’s nothing worse than getting sidelined with soreness or an injury. A regular visit to your massage therapist and chiropractor can help keep you on the go.
Getting proper nutrition in the tank is another must for all of your activities. Drinking plenty of water to keep your system cool and flushed is essential. And to keep your joints super happy and injury free, supplement with collagen and/or Ligaplex I or Ligaplex II from Standard Process.
Finally, a word of caution if you’ve got any long road trips planned: take a lot of breaks. Sitting is one of the toughest things on the body. It siphons your energy and puts cement in your joints. There’s a lot of science about what happens to your body when you sit for more than twenty minutes—and it isn’t good. If you’re heading across the country or even just across the state, take plenty of breaks where everyone gets out and gets moving. Try checking out the points of interest along the way. And if you see a park, everybody plays!
However you do summer, enjoy it. Take the very best care of yourself, eat great, reconnect with loved ones, and have fun on the go!
Images from iStock/IPGGutenbergUKLtd (main image), ckeenephoto (boy with apples).
vitamin D | whole food supplements