REFRESH: 10 ways to cool off in these final days of August


Temps of high 90s and a heck of a lot of humidity are pushing me to get even more creative with my clients and myself when it comes to cooling down. Though the fall is approaching (seriously, it is), it will likely be a few more weeks until we feel that wonderful autumn chill and pull out our boots and sweaters. Until then a few holistic wellness tips to keep calm, cool and carry on.

  1. Eat more raw foods.  Raw fruits and veggies of all kinds are excellent ways to beat the heat. According to ancient Ayurvedic practices, eating sweet fruits like melons, cherries or grapes and veggies like asparagus, cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower and zucchini are all especially helpful in cooling down any excess heat in the body.
  2. Drink herbal teas. Though it seems somewhat counter intuitive, hot teas brewed with the right herbs (or brewed then cooled) are also powerful and completely natural ways to turn down the heat. Mint, hibiscus, and dandelion are all excellent choices to add some cooling, balancing energy. If you’re like me, buy the herbs in bulk and make your own loose teas.  
  3. Take a cold shower. According to some yogic traditions and Eastern teachings, cold showers are a form of hydrotherapy that can cleanse and energize our entire systems. Waking us up and allowing us to feel refreshed.  It’s recommended that you first nourish the skin with an organic oil (like sesame or coconut) as a little layer before the shower. Learn more about this practice right here.
  4. Try a cooling breath like the Sitali Breath. Curl your tongue and inhale through the mouth (imagine your tongue is like a straw and you’re sucking the air in through the straw, at the top of the inhale, retract the tongue and breathe out your nose. Continue for 8-12 breaths. (If you can’t curl your tongue, no worries, just make an ‘o’ shape with your mouth and continue the exercise).
  5. Add a drop of peppermint essential oil to a glass of water. You will feel like you are drinking the most cooling, refreshing, and anti-inflammatory water ever. Trust me.
  6. Refresh with rose. In many ancient traditions, roses are renowned not only for their beautiful smell but their cooling effect on the body. Spritz yourself with some rosewater or add some dried rose petals to your tea, your bath, even your water.
  7. Go swimming. Pool. Lake. Ocean. Get your body in the water and enjoy that natural refresh and renewal.
  8. Give yourself some space. An over scheduled, overtaxed mind and body isn’t necessarily going to help keep you cool. Find ways to turn down the constant buzz of crazy with an evening stroll in nature, listening to calming music, and perhaps cutting yourself a bit of slack in these final summer days.
  9. Give yourself the gift of a softer touch. Wear more breathable clothes that have a natural cooling effect like linen and cotton and steer clear of all that yoga spandex for now.
  10. Try going barefoot. Connecting with the earth sans shoes can actually help your system better align with the cycles of the natural world. Even if it’s just for 2 or 3 minutes, kick off your shoes and feel the cool earth and grass beneath you. It’s also a great way to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, increase circulation in the body, and make you feel like a kid again.

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