Avoid Feeling Sluggish During Summer's Dog Days

Summer's dog days are known for making people feel sluggish. Long spells of hot and humid weather can make summer feel like an eternity.

Though there's little people can do about the temperatures outdoors when summer arrives in full swing, there are many ways they can make summer's dog days less draining. Consider the following tips.

* Be careful with caffeine. Caffeine has both its advocates and detractors. However, no one can argue caffeine's ability to provide a boost when needed. Those who drink caffeinated beverages in moderation can really benefit from the boost it provides. On sluggish summer mornings when the temperatures are already hot and humid at sunrise, a cup of iced coffee can not only provide a boost of energy but some refreshment as well.

When relying on caffeine for that extra pick-me-up during summer's dog days, it's important to carefully moderate caffeine consumption. Caffeine consumption in late afternoon or in the evening can actually have the adverse effect many people hope to get from caffeine. Because caffeine provides such a boost, those who drink caffeinated products in late afternoon or in the evening might have difficulty falling asleep at night, zapping their energy the following day as a result.

Caffeine can also be dehydrating, which is not healthy when hot, humid weather already takes its toll on the body. Keep this in mind and don't overdo caffeine consumption.

* Alter eating habits. Perhaps nothing can be more draining on a hot summer day than a big meal. Large meals on sizzling summer days rob people of energy and often lead to feelings of discomfort.

But this doesn't mean people should avoid eating as the summer temperatures heat up. Rather, altering existing eating habits can provide more energy and might even lead to some weight loss. Instead of three meals per day, eat smaller meals more frequently throughout the day. Healthy snacking during the day can help boost metabolism and maintain energy levels regardless of how hot it might be outside. Eat light meals every 3 to 4 hours, and avoid foods that are heavy and lead to feelings of lethargy.

* Look for foods high in fiber. Fiber can do a great deal for people looking to get more energy from their daily diets. The benefits of fiber are numerous, but perhaps no benefit is more pronounced than fiber's ability to flush toxins and wastes from the body. Such toxins and wastes make people feel very sluggish, particularly during summer's dog days. However, those who include fiber in their daily diets will notice a substantial improvement in their energy levels.

* Exercise in the morning. Many people look to exercise as a means to boosting energy during the summer swoon. This is a sound and healthy approach, but those who don't feel they're maximizing their workouts might want to consider working out in the mornings instead. Summer's dog days often make people feel tired by the end of the workday, something that could lead to less effective workouts for those who exercise after work. When working out in the morning, however, the temperatures are lower (even in air conditioned fitness centers temperatures can be noticeably warmer inside if the temperature outside is especially hot) in the gym and the body is better rested and ready to make the most of a workout. In addition, many people who workout in the mornings before work find their energy levels are higher throughout the day as a result.

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