Journey Woman

A Journeywoman's Beat-the-Heat Fact Sheet

Your body is an absolutely wonderful machine with its own built-in cooling system. That system depends on keeping a fluid balance within your body. As the temperature rises, your body's "air conditioning" mechanism switches to "on" and sweat glands begin to excrete fluids and salts. Simply put, these evaporate on the skin's surface and voila! You begin cooling off.

However, problems can arise when your body becomes too hot and/or you don't have enough fluids to keep your cooling system running at optimum power.

Whether you are spending your summer holiday in North America or planning a winter trip to the tropics, it helps to keep the following basic beat-the-heat advice in mind.


When it's hot, hot, hot!
  • Sightsee in early morning or late afternoon.
  • Don't exercise or work in the heat of the day.
  • Wear loose-fitting, light coloured cottons and avoid synthetics.
  • Safeguard yourself from UVB and UVA rays with high-protection factor sunscreens, sun glasses and wide rim hats.
  • Take frequent cool but not icy showers.
  • Drink at least 10 liters of water daily. Light colored urine indicates that you are well hydrated. Carry bottled water with you if necessary.
  • Remember that coffee and alcohol tend to dehydrate.
M. Assunta Uffer-Marcolongo , President of the International Association for Medical Travellers (IAMAT)

Men are better than women!
Men apparently acclimatize (to heat) faster than women because the male hormone, testosterone, stimulates sweating.
John Hatt, The Tropical Traveler,
Penguin Books
Sun-baked Lips
The best remedy for sore lips I have ever discovered is the jojoba moisture cream sold by the Body Shop.
John Hatt, The Tropical Traveler,
Penguin Books.

You're probably not a pregnant traveller!
It is common for menstruation to become irregular or stop temporarily, especially in temperature extremes. This does not require medical attention but may cause stress for sexually active heterosexual women.
Thalia Zepatos, A Journey of One's Own, The Eighth Mountain Press

Protect your journey baby
JourneyMamas and nannies take note! Babies' bottoms are very prone to prickly heat, an intense rash which develops when the sweat glands are plugged and become infected. To ease this condition, avoid plastic coated disposable diapers. Instead use cotton diapers and eliminate any rubber pants. Your journeybabies will be very grateful!
From Journeywoman files

Iced tea is not fuel for your cooling system!
Iced tea, iced coffee, an ice cold beer or caffeine-containing colas may seem like the perfect thirst quenchers. Wrong! They are all dehydrating and will increase your body's fluid loses. So, go ahead and enjoy them. But always be sure to down a couple of water chasers.
Source: Thirst Quenchers by Rosie Schwartz, RD, GUSTO! Summer 1997 issue.

The heat is on and you're a tourist!
  • Plan to be indoors especially during the extreme heat of the day.
  • Carry a collapsible fan and use it when necessary (i.e. in open-air markets, at bus stops on walking tours, etc.).
  • Concentrate on slowing down your walking pace.
  • Use transportation whenever possible even for short distances.
Source: Shopping in Exotic Thailand, Ron & Caryl Krannich

 

free newsletter | gal-friendly city sites | go-alone travel tips | love stories
travel classifieds | ms. biz | journey doctor | women's travel tales | she goes shopping
what should I wear? | letters to the editor | the older adventuress | travel 101 | girl talk guides
women helping women travel | her spa stop | her ecoadventures | best books
travel with kiddies | shopping | cruise holidays | awards and kudos | home
| search engine

Contact Information