Be hot, get thin

Yes, it’s hot. Very hot. But the good news, accoring to this interesting piece in Slate, is that heat is a natural appetite depressant. Get out of the air conditioning, and you may lose some weight.

But drink lots of water, OK?

10 thoughts on “Be hot, get thin”

  1. For the average person, hyponatremia isn’t much of an issue. It’s mostly a concern for those few who subject themselves to abnormal conditions such as marathons.

    Use common sense – drink up, stay indoors, eat a well balanced meal, and you’ll be fine.


  2. Great, now I’m not sure if my brain is swelling from all the reality tv I’m watching or from drinking too much water. I guess I’ll err on the side of cutting out the water. I wouldn’t want to miss Project Runway.


  3. I don’t know man. I knew this girl who was dating this guy whose brother almost died when he like drank the entire ocean or something, and his head swelled to the size of a zeppelin and he couldn’t pee at all and he went crazy and they had to put him in a home or something. And his brother had a rally strong neck or something and another brother was Chinese. I don’t remember the rest of the story after that.


  4. Runnergirl … thanks for reminding me to remind people that dogs are less heat-tolerant than humans are. Panting isn’t a very efficient way to cool down!

    No dog should be in a car in this weather, and all dogs need plenty of shade and water if they’re not in the air conditioned house (like mine!). Exercise in the cooler hours only, and don’t push a dog in this heat.

    A dog in heat stress needs to be taken to a veterinarian right away. It’s a life-threatening emergency.

    Here’s a flyer on dogs and heat stress from Sac County animal control:


  5. RG, the answer to that question depends on who you ask – me or him. He would definitely claim to be a lap dog. Unfortunately for him he is not only heavy but also a drooler. Not desirable qualities for sharing a lap! But also not bad enough to get him abandoned in the car.


  6. Here is the text from the flyer, doesn’t say what to do if you see one though:

    High fever must be reduced rapidly to save the dog?s life and prevent permanent brain
    damage. Body temperature of 106? and above can be tolerated for only a few minutes
    before irreversible damage occurs.
    If heatstroke occurs:
    1. Gradually immerse the dog in cool water if possible
    2. Or, spray it with cold water from garden hose
    3. Apply ice packs to head and neck. Above all, treat the dog promptly and take it to a veterinarian as soon as possible. Heat stroke, heat exhaustion and heat cramps must be treated by a veterinarian.

    1. Never leave a dog in a closed automobile, unventilated garage or other
    enclosure in hot weather, for ANY length of time.
    2. Provide shade cover outdoors.
    3. Avoid excessive exercise of dogs during extremely hot weather.
    4. Keep plenty of fresh drinking water available at all times.

    County of Sacramento Animal Control and Regulation 4290 Bradshaw Road Sacramento, CA 95827
    (916) 366-2632

    Effects of Temperatures on Dogs
    120?-Heat Exhaustion and Death
    107?- Brain Damage
    101.5?- Dogs Normal Body Temperature

    According to Sacramento County ordinances, keeping dogs in hot cars or unsafe conditions is not permitted. In 80? weather, your parked car becomes a 120? oven within 20 minutes – EVEN WITH THE WINDOWS SLIGHTLY OPEN. Your dog can bake to death, dying of suffocation because he cannot ?pant? fast enough to keep cool. For this reason, you should leave your dogs at home in the summer.

    Ordinance 8.08.051 ?No person shall leave an animal, wild or domestic, in any unattended motorized vehicle without adequate ventilation, in unhealthful conditions, or otherwise under such circumstances as to allow the animal to be subjected to extreme temperatures or other conditions which adversely affect its health, safety, or well-being.?


  7. Don’t overdo it on the water, however. If you’re outside for prolonged periods during the heat, or are exerting yourself at all in the heat, be sure to take in plenty of electrolytes as well.

    If you have too much water, you risk hyponatremia, and your brain could swell causing serious injury or death.

    Drinking Gatorade or eating salty foods can help you maintain proper electrolyte balances. If you find drinks like Gatorade too sweet, dilute it so it’s half water/half sport drink. I do the half-and-half as my primary fluid intake when out on the trails all day. (What you could do is fill your water bottle or Camelbak with ice cubes, then top it off with Gatorade.)

    If you’re an athlete training in the heat, take SUCCEED! electrolyte capsules — they deliver the most bang for your buck (Endurolytes have nowhere near the optimum levels to keep you healthy.) These salt tabs generally aren’t recommended for the non-athletes since you wouldn’t be burning through them as quickly as someone who was exerting themself quite a bit.

    Watch out for signs of heatstroke too — really worry when you STOP sweating and you’re still in the heat. Heatstroke can make you dizzy, confused, and you may even get goosebumps, mostly on your chest. It doesn’t take long for heatstroke to cause serious and lasting organ damage, and some people may not show or feel any symptoms. Certain medications may make you prone to overheating more readily, and those who are not used to exercising are also at higher risk.

    Get out of the heat immediately, and cool yourself down by applying cold compresses or ice packs. Apply packs to body parts that cool your blood off more quickly: in your armpits and in the groin area — the large arteries and vessels in these areas will carry the cooled off blood to the rest of your body more quickly.


  8. Thanks for the tip, docquack — guess I’m used to being around people for whom this is a genuine issue (ultra runners and construction workers.) To the rest of you, get off the couch! 🙂


  9. FauxPaws: What should we do if we see a dog trapped in a car on a hot day? (Not our dog & not our car, but we feel a moral obligation to do something.) It doesn’t take much for them to overheat in what we think are mild temps, right? (I can’t get your link to work, so all the answers may be there.)

    HeyMeg: Is your lab/great dane mix a lap dog? I know lots of people with huge dogs who claim they’re lap dogs — now THAT’S got to get hot on a day like today. You & your pup should check out the new show “Psych” on USA Network.


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