Monday, June 20, 2016

Heat Hacks

How to Stay Cool Without Air Conditioning
Article by Lisa Brenner Katz courtesy of KPCC staff

Excessive heat warnings have been issued for large portions of Southern California, with triple-digit temperatures expected to bear down on Southern California in the days to come. 

Below you'll find practical advice from health officials, local resources from safety professionals and questionable suggestions from formerly hot people.


In the face of tyrannical temperatures, it is essential to stay hydrated. Failing to drink enough water can result in a number of dangerous defeats, including, but not limited to, heat cramps, heat stroke and death. 

However, not all beverages are on your side. To make sure you're imbibing only allies, follow these basic guidelines:
  1. Tip: Don't wait until you're thirsty to drink water or electrolyte-replacements 
  2. Tip: Drink cool water, not extremely cold water (which can cause cramps)
  3. Tip: Avoid sweetened drinks, caffeine, alcohol
The CDC says that in extreme heat you must increase fluid intake regardless of your activity level. Eight to 10 glasses of water per day is advised. If engaging in "heavy exercise in a hot environment," they recommend drinking:

Two to four glasses (16-32 ounces) of cool fluids every hour.

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Faintness
  • Headaches
  • Muscle cramps
  • Increased thirst
  • Diminished judgment
  • Disorientation
  • Pale and clammy skin
  • Rapid, weak pulse
  • Fast, shallow breathing
  • Unconsciousness
  • Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
  • An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)


In times of excessive heat, authorities say to dress like you're on vacation. That includes:
  • Hat, preferably with a wide brim
  • Loose-fitting, light-colored, long-sleeve shirts and pants
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses

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