The summer months in Houston can be brutal. As temperatures and humidity rise, so do health
risks — especially if you’re pregnant. You need to take special care to keep yourself cool,
comfortable, and healthy. Here’s what to keep in mind throughout the dog days of summer.
1. Stay Hydrated
The more you sweat, the more fluids your body loses. Staying hydrated helps boost your
metabolism and energy levels and, of course, prevent dangerous dehydration. Make it a habit
to keep a water bottle nearby throughout the day. When you’re thirsty, take a few sips.
Pure water is the best way to stay hydrated. Pick water over sugary juices or soda, and avoid
energy drinks as much as possible. These drinks can actually lead to dehydration.
2. Eat Light
Did you know that eating causes your body temperature to rise? It makes sense: a nice, hot meal
makes you feel warm during the winter. Unfortunately, the same thing happens during the
To help prevent overheating, keep your meals lightweight. A bunch of small meals throughout
the day are better than several heavy meals. Plus, it’s easier to regulate your calories. Opt for
fresh fruits and veggies, soft foods such as yogurt, and lean proteins.
3. Eat Cool
Hot foods don’t just make you feel warmer; they can actually raise your body temperature.
Keep yourself cool with chilled or room-temperature foods. Try delicious gazpacho soups or
tabouleh-style dishes rather than heavy chilis or casseroles. Opt for chilled proteins such as
chilled cooked shrimp, ahi tuna, or hardboiled eggs in your salads.
Also, stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables. As a bonus, by eating these raw means, you can get
more nutrients from them. A lot of produce, including watermelon, grapes, and tomatoes, has
a high water content that keeps you hydrated as well! Plus, your baby will appreciate all those
4. Stay Clean
Your skin is the first line of defense against overheating. When you sweat, the moisture
evaporates to cool you off. Unfortunately, a mixture of sweat and dead skin cells can lead to
skin irritation, dryness, or plain B.O.
You should regularly exfoliate and moisturize your skin during the summer. This also ensures
that your skin is healthy and unbroken, which means it’s a better barrier against germs that
could cause harmful infections. So, don’t be afraid to indulge in some skincare!
5. Exercise Smart
As a mom-to-be, you benefit from working out. It keeps your heart healthy and helps you
maintain your metabolism. However, you definitely don’t want to go for your usual jog in the
Houston summer heat! Your body temperature rises when you exercise, so it’s much easier to
overheat if you’re out in the sun.
Now is the time to splurge on that gym membership — or stick to early morning or evening for
your workout. Exercise indoors whenever possible, and be sure to keep plenty of water on
6. Dress to Keep Cool
Speaking of exercise, avoid stretchy leggings or tops while you work out. Those materials
actually trap heat and make it harder for you to cool off. Instead, keep your clothing loose-fitting
and light in color. (Plus, your growing belly will appreciate the extra room.) Choose garments
made of cotton, linen, and other natural fabrics that allow your skin to breathe.
7. Be Sun-Safe
You need sunscreen all day, every day, even if you’re not on the beach. In addition to
preventing painful burns, sunscreen is crucial to minimize your risk of skin cancer. As a mom-to-be, there’s no better time to make sun safety an essential part of your daily routine.
Remember that sunscreen only lasts a couple of hours, so be prepared to reapply throughout
8. Stay Indoors
The best way to beat the heat? Enjoy that amazing A/C. Avoid going out during the warmer
times of the day. Between 1 and 5 p.m., the sun is at peak intensity. Much like winters up north,
the summer months in Texas are meant to be spent indoors.
Tired of being stuck in the house? Good thing there’s plenty to do in Houston! Enjoy the lovely,
indoor museums, galleries, theaters, and restaurants.
9. Clean Your Home
You won’t be able to enjoy that A/C if it’s not working well. Your home’s air ducts and vents are
probably dirtier than you think. Allergens and dust build-up throughout the year. This means
that during summer when the AC should be in optimal condition, you could be dealing with a hot, stuffy home.
Also, poor indoor air quality could lead to respiratory infections, which you definitely don’t want
while you’re pregnant.
So, be sure to change your filters regularly, keep your vents clean, and considering hiring
someone to clean the ducts.
10. Slow Down
Summer is not a time for busyness and high-energy work, especially if you’re pregnant. The
more you can stay relaxed and cool, the healthier that you and your baby will be. Take some time to
unwind with a good book and a cold glass of water (or if you’re craving some summer
sweetness, lemonade). Put your feet up: you deserve it, momma!
Staying cool during the Houston summer is not just a matter of comfort; it’s crucial to your
health during your pregnancy. You will feel less stressed, more energetic, and overall better if
you skip the hot foods, heavy meals, and binding clothing. Think “breezy” for everything you
do: embrace early mornings, A/C, and indoor activities. And don’t forget to stock up on water,
fresh foods, and sunscreen!
Excessive heat can make you sick and stressed.
By following these tips, you and your baby can enjoy a cooler, healthier summer.