Kempinski Blog Article
If you enjoy travelling across the world, you will have to get used to experiencing hot weather a lot of the time, particularly if you have mainly lived at latitudes above 40° north or 30° south, where temperatures are mild and never jump or drop to extremes.
There are lots of things you can do to improve your ability to cope with hotter climates though, allowing you to explore and enjoy the best the world has to offer, however high or low the temperature gets.
There is a reason why our bodies can’t cope with a wide variety of climates, and it’s called acclimatisation. This is a physiological response that is different to short-term reactions like sweating or shivering, instead having a deeper character. Your body’s acclimatisation is made up of things like hormones and your metabolism, which control when and how much you sweat or shiver at particular temperatures.
Your acclimatisation isn’t set, however, and you can train it – the process has been known since the sixties. A recent study showed that just ten days of exposure to cold can improve the human body’s ability to warm itself without shivering when placed in a cold environment. Conversely, spending time in heat has also been shown to improve a person’s ability to function in hotter environments too.
So next time you are planning on travelling to the northern reaches of Russia in St Petersburg, or enjoying a month’s safari on the Masai Mara during the dry season, expose yourself to similar temperatures for a few weeks beforehand to get an upper hand over the climate!
If you don’t have time to properly acclimatise and don’t like the heat, there are a lot of things you can do to cope with hot, humid weather that go beyond the obvious advice of wearing sun cream and drinking water.
For those nights when you can’t sleep, you will drastically improve your levels of comfort by using cotton sheets, preferably ones that are lightweight. Cotton is a very breathable material, which naturally makes it a good choice for summer clothing too.
Ice and a fan
If you have got some ice and a desk fan available, create a cool breeze by placing a container of ice in front of the fan. You will create an ice-cold mist of air to banish the hot temperatures.
Utilise your physiology
Kangaroos in the unforgiving Australian outback regulate their temperatures by licking the undersides of their forearms – an area of their bodies where veins and arteries are close to the surface of the skin. Transpiration of the moisture cools the skin, which in turn cools their blood, circulated throughout their bodies.
Why are we telling you this? Because the same applies to humans. Apply cold water and cold compresses to areas such as your wrists, neck, elbows, ankles and behind the knees to give your circulatory system a burst of cool.
While you might feel the need to enjoy an ice-cold alcoholic drink or a caffeinated soda to perk you up in the heat, resist the urge. Alcohol and caffeine will dehydrate your body, which will negatively affect your body’s ability to regulate its heat. Instead, choose a big glass of cold water.
Big, heavy meals make even the best of us drowsy, and hot meals don’t do much good when the temperature is soaring. To enjoy your meals and help with your ability to cope with the heat, eat small, cold dishes throughout the day – salads, mezze dishes and antipasti for example.
Next time you are staying at a Kempinski destination and can’t stand the heat, take the advice above and you should feel a little better. If you need more assistance, contact the front desk and our staff will try their hardest to make your stay more comfortable.