Temperatures are rising, and the days are getting longer. It's summertime once again! Here are tips to make your summer the best and healthiest yet.
Grill and Chill
Whether you prefer burgers or a picnic in the park, one thing you don't want on the menu this summer is foodborne illness. Keep germs at bay:
* Wash hands before and after handling food.
* When taking food off the grill, don't put cooked food back on the same plate that previously held raw food.
* Grill foods on coals that are preheated for at least 20-30
* Use a meat thermometer to ensure food reaches safe internal temperature.
* Never let raw food, cooked food, or cut fresh fruit/vegetables sit at room temperature more than two hours before putting in a cooler or refrigerator.
* Make sure to pack plenty of extra ice or freezer packs in your cooler to ensure constant temperature.
Beat the Heat
Heat-related illnesses claim lives of hundreds of people each year. It's important to take precautions when working or playing outside during the hot months.
* Drink plenty of water.
* Wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothing light in color.
* Reduce strenuous activities or do them during cooler parts of the day.
Fun in the Sun
Summer plans may include hitting the beach or spending more time outdoors. Plan to avoid sunburn to decrease sun cancer risks.
* Seek shade, especially during midday hours when UV rays are strongest and do the most damage.
* Cover up with clothing to protect exposed skin. A long-sleeved shirt and long pants are best.
* Wear a hat with a wide brim to shade the face, head, ears, an
* Wear quality shades that block UVA and UVB rays.
* Rub on sunscreen with sun protection factor of 15 or higher.
Swimming is a fun way to stay cool and be active. Before diving in, make sure you know these tips for staying healthy and safe while swimming.
* Avoid swallowing pool water or even getting it in your mouth.
* Shower before swimming and wash hands after using the bathroom or changing a diaper.
* Keep an eye on children at all times. Kids can drown in seconds and in silence.
* Never swim alone or in unsupervised locations. Teach children to always swim with a buddy.
* Don't use air-filled swimming aids in place of life preservers or life jackets.
* Know water safety rules on the lake, and make sure everyone has a life preserver in case of emergency.