Posts Tagged ‘hot-weather safety’

How to acclimate to the heat and how it happens

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H.

Pop quiz:

  1. Why are some outdoor workers more prone to heat strokes after the first hot spell in early summer than later when it gets even hotter?
  2. Why are there more heat strokes in Chicago when the temperature may be hotter elsewhere at the same time?


Much has to do with your body having time to adapt, otherwise called acclimatization.  It takes between eight and 12 days for your body to acclimate to higher temperatures so when those hot days hit, you’re not ready.  The body acclimates to heat by: (more…)

Heat regulation: How your body keeps you from getting too hot

Monday, June 8th, 2009

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H.

Summertime comes with lots of tips on how to stay cool. But for you how-stuff-works buffs out there, here’s the science behind why those tips work.

First, some basics on your body and heat.

  • Heat is energy and is generated.  Cold is not generated, but is the absence of heat.
  • Your body generates heat from metabolism even while you’re at rest (called the basic metabolic rate or BMR).  In fact, it usually creates more than you need.  Mechanisms explained below regulate you around 98.6 F.
  • You generate as much as three to six times more heat with exercise.
  • Just resting in the hot sun can increase your BMR 50 percent more than resting in the shade.
  • Stimulant drugs like amphetamines and cocaine also cause you to generate more heat.

Now, here are the whys behind some of the dos.

Heat-related deaths climb with the temperature. What you can do.

Monday, June 16th, 2008

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H

Don’t let the heat get you down. There are steps you can follow to avoid heat cramps, heat exhaustion, heat strokes.


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