Red alert for heat and fires in Sicily, in Palermo on Friday with temperatures up to 37 degrees

The regional Civil Protection has issued a warning for fire risk and heatwaves, valid from midnight for the next 24 hours. Tomorrow in Palermo, a maximum perceived temperature of 37 degrees Celsius is expected (level 3, red color). For the province of Palermo, also for tomorrow, a fire risk of “medium” danger and an orange alert level have been declared.

Eating and drinking properly helps to face the heat and reduce health risks due to heatwaves, especially dehydration. When it is very hot, children, pregnant women, and the elderly may suffer more and be more exposed to the risk of dehydration.

1) Drink at least two liters (eight glasses) of water a day. In summer, minerals are lost due to increased sweating and transpiration. It is particularly important for the elderly to drink, regardless of thirst. Children should drink more. Moderate the consumption of beverages with added sugars. Limit the consumption of moderately alcoholic beverages such as wine and beer. Avoid beverages with a high alcohol content.

2) Respect the number and times of meals daily, especially breakfast, which should be prioritized over other meals. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, providing fuel for the whole day. Not having a proper breakfast predisposes to a greater calorie intake in the following hours.

3) Increase the consumption of seasonal fruits and vegetables and yogurt. Eat fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables (at least 400g per day, according to WHO). Prefer unsweetened yogurt. Together with fruit, it can be a great snack. Do not neglect dried fruits (almonds, walnuts, etc.), rich in “healthy” fats, minerals, and fibers, but do not exaggerate as it provides calories.

4) Prepare dishes with creativity, varying foods in colors. The color of foods is given by antioxidant substances (vitamins, polyphenols, etc.): the more varied the colors, the more complete their intake.

5) Moderate the consumption of elaborate and fatty dishes. With heat, the body consumes less energy. It is advisable to moderate caloric intake, preferring a cooking method that maintains the intake of minerals and vitamins unchanged, also decreasing the amount of salt to add during preparation. Season with raw olive oil.

6) Prefer fresh, easily digestible foods rich in water and complete the meal with fruit. This rule should be followed especially when having a packed lunch, not overdoing it with salty or sugary snacks.

7) Consuming ice cream or a smoothie can be an alternative to a midday meal. Ice cream or milk smoothie replacing a meal should be part of the daily nutritional intake.

8) Avoid complete meals with first course, second course, and side dish when, during stays in a hotel or traveling, it is easier to have both lunch and dinner at a restaurant. Opt for balanced single dishes that can provide the nutrients of a whole meal. Some possible combinations are pasta with legumes and/or vegetables, meat/fish/eggs with vegetables.

9) Consume little salt and prefer iodized salt. Iodine deficiency is still a problem: the thyroid gland influences many body functions and needs the right daily intake, guaranteed by consuming only 5g of iodized salt. For hypertensive individuals, it may be useful to consume low-sodium or sodium-free salt.

10) Respect the food storage methods. Maintain the cold chain for foods that require it (thermal bag for picnics). Remember that foods stored for a long time in the refrigerator risk nutritional deterioration and/or contamination by microorganisms.

Allerta rossa per caldo e incendi in Sicilia, a Palermo venerdì con temperature fino a 37 gradi

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