Summertime is an incredible opportunity to optimize your health and wellbeing.
Here at Neurology Office, we are committed to helping you maximize your wellness this season! Here are 3 easy steps you can implement to nurture your neurological and general health this summer season.
1. Treat your Brain to Fresh Air
If you have found yourself spending more time indoors than usual this past year, take some time to enjoy the outdoors this summer season. Regularly spending time in nature has been proven to reduce stress and improve physical wellbeing.
When it comes to neurological health, the brain is particularly sensitive to decreased oxygen levels and stale air within the home and office spaces. I always encourage my patients to treat their brains to fresh air (at least once a day) to help maintain healthy neurological function.
Bonus: If you are able to, try to incorporate daily outdoor walks into your schedule; you can do this alone or with a friend or family member. Remember, the benefits are endless! Those who spend more time outdoors, also enjoy lower base heart rates, lower blood pressure, reduced stress hormone (cortisol) levels, and a calmer nervous system.
2. Take advantage of natural Vitamin D
Vitamin D has been shown to have a profound impact on the human body... and for good reason! Vitamin D functions as a hormone, which impacts every aspect of our bodies, from cell function to brain chemistry and immunity.
Healthy levels of vitamin D have been shown to decrease the risk and symptoms of conditions such as osteoporosis, multiple sclerosis, viral infections, dementia, heart disease, and cancer.
During the summer (especially here in South Florida), we are given the added benefit of extra minutes of sunlight. This can be a great way to take advantage of the sun’s rays and enjoy the benefits of natural vitamin D.
When you absorb the sun’s rays, your body reacts to the ultraviolet rays in your skin, producing the Vitamin D. This reaction is also directly linked to the regulation of brain chemicals such as serotonin and dopamine, which is why a day in the sun always feels so good!
Note: Healthy sun exposure means doing so in moderation. About 15 minutes, three times a week during non-peak hours (avoid noon to 3 pm), is a comfortable way to get a healthy dose of vitamin D. Anything more than that would require sunscreen to prevent burns and other skin issues.
3. Hydrate Well and Often
There are significant benefits to spending time outdoors in the summertime.
However, this is also a time many patients report higher incidences of “sick headaches” and migraines. Much of this is due to an increase in temperatures resulting in blood vessel expansion and dehydration.
Maintaining healthy hydration levels is key during the summertime, especially if you want to prevent these “summer migraines” and joint pain.
An easy way to remember to stay hydrated is to bring a tall bottle of water with you whenever you leave the house. Remember to drink a glass of water every hour and add in lemon or honey if you need some extra motivation. In general, dehydration can put significant stress on the brain and the body. Its effects have been linked to decreased cognitive function, muscle cramps, weakness, dizziness, sleepiness, decreased amounts of urine, vomiting, and more.
For more details on the benefits of hydration, how much water you should drink and more... check out our article Experience Relief Through Hydration here.
A Personal Message from Dr. Kandel
"Summer is a time for fun and relaxation....and for improved physical and mental health. Taking care of yourself, both mind and body, is the way to make sure you get the most out of your summer! Get out and enjoy the summer and all the joy it brings— just don’t do it at the expense of your body and brain. Hydrate, get plenty of vitamin D, and take in the beauty of the sunny warm season while it’s here."
Feel free to share this with the people in your life who may benefit from this information! For more insights on neurology, check out our weekly tips on our Neurology Office Facebook page.
“To Cure Sometimes, To Heal Often, To Comfort Always”
If you have any questions about staying healthy this summer, or would like to schedule an appointment, please contact the Neurology Office for more help.
Neurology Office, Joseph Kandel M.D. and Associates
“Concierge medicine without the concierge price”