- Minimizing Chlorine Toxicity
Summer usually means pool parties. Chlorine and other chemicals are necessary for keeping our pools hygienic, but they can be pretty toxic to our bodies. Instead of swearing off pools entirely (who could do that in Florida?), just follow a few guidelines.
- Shower before and after entering the pool. This helps the chlorine not be absorbed into your body as much
- Swim in outdoor pools when possible because the chlorine gets off-gassed into the air and isn't as concentrated
- Wear a mask keep water out of your eyes
- Swim in fresh water when possible
- Choose a Safe Sunscreen
Most people are very vitamin D deficient, even here in Florida. Take about 10-15 minutes when you go into the sun without putting sunscreen on. After that, use a non-toxic mineral based (instead of chemical based) sunscreen that contains titanium dioxide or zinc oxide as the active ingredient. These ingredients create a physical, rather than a chemical, screen against the sun. Some good brands to look for include Aubrey, All Terrain and Alba. You can search the Skin Deep Cosmetics Database for healthy products.
- Eat and Drink Cooling Foods
According to acupuncture and Chinese medicine theory, heat is a pathogen that can cause disease in the body. Heat can be acquired from things happening inside of the body (such as inflammation) or can invade from the exterior of the body (like our 90+ days here in Jax). Acupuncture treatments and herbal medicine can help eliminate heat from the body when necessary. You can also help by eating cooling foods. According to Chinese medicine dietary theory, these would be some good foods to include in your diet this summer:
- alfalfa sprouts
- egg white
- hibiscus tea
- mung beans
In general, eating more fresh veggies and salad this time of year is a good idea. Fried and heavy foods are very heating, as is alcohol. You can still have some of these foods, just keep them in moderation. Be sure to drink plenty of fresh water. Coconut water is also an excellent choice and is a great natural substitution for Gatorade.