Could this really end this health problem for good...?

The Good Life Letter

7th May 2010

  • The threat of a record heat wave and what you should do to protect yourself
  • How to look after yourself when a heat wave arrives
  • What is heatstroke?
  • Suffer from allergies? Here's something you really should try... 

When it started, I hardly noticed it...

An innocent little sneeze. That's all it was. And as I make
MUCH worse noises than that during the course of a day, no one
said a thing.

But over the last few days, it's grown worse and worse, until

Over the last week, the family have practically had to dive for
cover because my sneezing has grown ridiculous. Maybe you
heard it from your house...?

Yes you, Mr Smith in Australia.

It really is THAT loud.

At first I blamed it on the volcano (just because I'm sick of
blaming bankers for EVERYTHING).

Personally I didn't see any volcano ash in my area. I have some
friends who swear they've seen some, like my mate Graham
who said his car was covered in about an inch of ash, until his
wife pointed out it was just dirt.

Anyway, whether the ash actually made it through the
atmosphere and into my lungs is up for debate.

But the fact that flowers have started springing open means that
- ash aside - my sneezing and snuffling is only going to get
worse if I do nothing. (Luckily I have a GREAT remedy for
allergies that I'll tell you about in a minute).

First, a weather flash...

The threat of a record heat wave and what you
should do to protect yourself

Late last night I heard our local weatherman explain that a wave
of high pressure is headed our way this summer.

That's a heat wave to the likes of you and me.

Okay, maybe it's only ME that needs things explaining in more
simple terms.

But basically, we're in for a pretty scorchy summer.

Now, knowing our luck in Britain, this will actually translate to
three midweek days of sunshine, interrupted by showers. And
perhaps sleet. And a shower of locusts.

But for those three days, everyone will be out and about and
enjoying the weather.

I've already dusted down a few combinations of shirts and
shorts that will induce waves of nausea wherever I go, and can
already feel my wallet bracing itself for an onslaught from
Lara... one that revolves around 'I have nothing to wear when
it's this hot'.

Of course I'll point at about a hundred things summer things she
has overflowing from her wardrobe, but she'll just look at me as
though I was an MP filling out an expenses form.

"Ray, those dresses are three years old," she'll say, with a
mixture of exasperation and homicidal tendencies.

Anyhow, the hot weather's approaching, and it's something we
should all enjoy when it gets here.

But it's also something we should prepare for, because there are
dangers hidden inside the good weather...

How to look after yourself when a heat wave arrives

In day to day life, our bodies regulate our temperatures through
sweating. But when really hot weather arrives, sweating isn't
powerful enough to keep our temperatures down.

It's a bit like holding a hand fan to your face when you really
need to switch the air conditioning on.

And when our sweating function is overworked and not
effective, our blood chemistry can change. In extreme examples,
this can lead to brain and kidney damage.

But it's more likely you'll fall prey to more common conditions
like heatstroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps, sunburn and heat
rash, if you don't protect yourself.

What is heatstroke?

Heat stroke occurs when the body becomes unable to control its
temperature: the body's temperature rises rapidly, the sweating
mechanism fails and the body is unable to cool down. Body
temperature may rise to 106 degrees F or higher within 10 to 15
minutes. Heatstroke can result from overexposure to direct
sunlight, with or without physical activity, or to very high
indoor temperatures. It can cause death or permanent disability
if emergency treatment is not given.

Yep - it's that bad. That's why it's essential that you limit the
amount of time you spend outdoors, and always avoid the peak
heat hours of 12.00-3.00pm.

Of course you can pop out during these hours. You're not going
to shrivel up and burst into flame the moment a sun beam hits
you (unless your name is Dracula and you live in Transylvania,
in which case you should be reading the The Un-Dead Letter
rather than this one).

But you really shouldn't stay out in the peak hours for too long.
I for one round up all the family like a pack of sheep during this
time and take them in the shade for a nice long lunch. And I
always drink plenty of water when it's hot - more than I do
when it's cold.

Here are some more tips to help protect yourself against heat
stroke and heat exhaustion...

- Phone a friend... All right, I cribbed that from Who Wants
To Be A Millionaire, but 'check up on a friend' doesn't have
the same ring to it. But the idea is the same. During a
heatwave, it's great if you can check up on someone who's
at risk. If you are at home and are 65 years of age or older or
have a chronic health problem, ask a friend, relative or
neighbour check on you at least twice a day, even if you
have air conditioning. If you know someone who is 65 years
of age or older or who has a chronic health problem, check
on them at least twice a day.

- Limit outdoor activities. Try to plan activities for the
coolest times of the day--before noon and in the evening.
When physically active, rest frequently in the shade.

- Drink plenty of fluids. During hot weather, you will need to
drink more liquid than you think you need to. Even if you
don't feel thirsty, you should drink regularly during the day.
Even if you remain indoors and limit your activity, your
body still needs to replace lost fluids, salt and minerals.

- Protect your body. Wear as little clothing as possible when
indoors, and wear light coloured, loose fitting clothing
outdoors. When spending time outdoors, avoid direct
sunlight, wear a hat and use one of the natural sunblocks
I've recommended in past Good Life Letters (you can find
them at

- Never leave children, the elderly or pets in a parked car,
not even for just a few minutes. The air temperature inside
a car rises rapidly during hot weather and can lead to brain
damage or death.

I apologise if this all sounds as alarmist as all the mainstream
papers that I usually moan about. But hot weather is one of those
funny things... it's difficult to imagine it being able to harm you
in so many ways because it feels so pleasant.

And besides, getting out into the sunshine IS healthy, if you act

And while we're on the subject of hot weather, here's something
else I think you should take a look at...

Suffer from allergies...? Here's something you really should

When the hot weather hits, allergies tend to soar. Whether it's an
increase in pollution or an increase in pollen, more and more
people suffer from breathing difficulties in the summer months.

If that's the case with someone you know, or if you suffer from
breathing problems, including asthma, then take a look at this:

This is the best method I know of fighting breathing problems,
and it's 100% natural. Plus, there's something very special about
this, as you'll discover when you read the attached...

Right. That's it from me today. I'm off to dust down my
summer shirts and put the ear plugs in so I can't hear people

I'll be back next week with more tips and ideas from the world
of natural, sensible health.

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