“Don’t fail to drink fresh fruit juices, tender coconut, etc.”

The Temple City, which is already facing a temperature of 40 degree Celsius on an average, has its residents running for shade and exploring options to keep them fit and healthy throughout the summer.

With dehydration, giddiness and exhaustion having become synonymous with the extremely hot weather, nutritionists in hospitals here are stressing the importance of a healthy diet to beat the heat.

“Natural options such as fresh fruit juices, tender coconut, buttermilk, water melon, etc., are the best hydrants. Simple addition of mint and basil leaves to drinking water is enough to keep refreshed and hydrated,” says Jayanthi All, chief dietician at Meenakshi Medical Hospital and Research Centre.

With fresh vegetables and fruits taking priority in a summer diet, G. Raj, who sells palm juice (padhaneer), says, “The drink is a natural coolant which is available only during the summer months.”

Fitness regimes aren’t far behind. Fitness trainers say it is better that people finish outdoor activities before 7 a.m. or begin after 5 p.m.

“When people go outdoors for a fitness regime during daytime, chances are more that they will be dehydrated,” says Ghouse Basha, a fitness trainer at a gym.

“It is important to take to a fitness regime suitable to one’s age during summer. While youngsters can hit the gym and do cardio exercises, we ask older people to take to an activity like yoga,” he adds.

Gandhi Memorial Museum, which conducts special yoga classes during the summer, has already got more than 100 people who have registered to learn yoga during May.

“Instead of a strenuous physical activity during heat, yoga is not only an effective fitness regime but also helps balance the heat. It will cool down the system and relax the mind, something that is much needed during the scorching heat,” says K.P. Gangadharan, yoga coordinator at the museum.

Swimming has also emerged as the best option to keep fit and cool, especially among children who want to beat the heat during their summer vacations.

The Corporation swimming pool has children and adults alike thronging the entrance as early as 9 a.m.

“We need more such affordable swimming pools in the city,” says K. Sebastian, a resident of S.S. Colony who had accompanied his children to the pool.

“Most private pools demand double the amount charged here and the timings are not flexible enough,” he adds.

More In: Madurai