How to have your healthiest summer ever

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The thongs are out, daylight hours are stretching and we’re dipping our toes in the waves again… yep, it’s official, summer is here.

For many of us, the warmer months are the most joyful time of year – but this can also be the period when we get swept up in a summer daze and prioritising our wellness is delegated to Future You.

Yet, with a few clever habits and lifestyle tweaks, it is possible to live your best life while also enjoying your healthiest summer ever (promise). Read on for the ultimate summer health checklist.

Stay hydrated

Nutritionist and yoga teacher Lexi Crouch recommends always keeping a water bottle handy when you’re out and about.

“Drinking water may be the best thing you can do for your wellbeing this summer,” she says.

“By drinking 1.5-2 litres per day, you’ll keep your energy levels up, assist with any headaches from sun exposure, help with hangovers after summer parties and help aid digestion after Christmas feasts.”

Smile daily

According to author, speaker and simplicity expert Bronwen Sciortino, feeling great doesn’t have to be hard work.

“We allow life to be really complex, when simplicity will do,” she says.

“To support your wellbeing this summer, find the things that make you shine: what are the people, places, things, foods and activities that make you smile from the inside out?”

Give yourself something to smile about every day, she says – like getting out for a walk in the sunshine. “When we smile, we let our body know that we’re safe, which can reduce the amount of time we spend in fight or flight mode.”

Keep your blood sugar stable

Naturopath and functional medicine practitioner Jules Galloway says keeping your blood sugar levels stable throughout the day will help you feel your best during the steamy months.

She explains that eating this way means you’ll be less likely to crave sweet pick-me-ups (and resist the temptation to make those icy gelatos a daily thing).

“This means avoiding sugar and white, starchy carbohydrates (these cause our energy levels to drop around 3:30 in the afternoon),” she says.

Having a summer picnic? “Eat a palm-sized portion of protein-containing food with each meal and fill your plate with colourful veggies, salad and a drizzle of healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil.”

Assess your relationships

Stressful or unhealthy relationship dynamics (think: that friend who always makes it all about her, or constant bickering with your other half about who isn’t pulling their weight) can really impact our overall sense of wellness.

“For women who have previously fallen for the myth of ‘having it all’, 2020 was a year which became a catalyst for change,” says speaker and the author of Breaking the Gender Code Danielle Dobson.

Now’s the time to take stock and create new intentions for a better 2021. “Make time over summer to sit down with the important people with your life to create new agreements,” she recommends.

“It could be a conversation with your partner about rebalancing the workload at home, or a chat with your kids about their responsibilities.”

Get into nature

Yes, this is permission to go to the beach!

“Most of us have spent a lot of time indoors this year,” says Lexi Crouch, “and with restrictions being lifted, summer is the time to revisit nature again.”

Nature can play a huge role in our health and wellbeing, she says.

“The exposure to sunlight increases the release of the hormone serotonin, which is associated with boosting our mood. It also gives a hit of Vitamin D. Just remember to slip, slop, slap.”

Make sure your summer adventures are always accompanied by sunscreen; UV rays from the sun can cause skin ageing and skin burning! Thanks to its lightweight and dry touch non-sticky feel, Neutrogena’s Ultra Sheer range is the most unsunscreeny sunscreen ever. For more information visit https://www.chemistwarehouse.com.au/search?searchtext=neutrogena%20sunscreen&fh=1

ALWAYS READ THE LABEL. FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS FOR USE. PROLONGED HIGH-RISK SUN EXPOSURE SHOULD BE AVOIDED. FREQUENT RE-APPLICATION IS REQUIRED FOR EFFECTIVE SUN PROTECTION.

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