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Once the temperature rises above 90 degrees, you are at risk for sunstroke, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heatstroke.   You can take steps to prevent these risky conditions.

In terms of its potential to harm you, only the cold of winter poses a greater threat than the summer heat, according to the National Weather Service.   Knowing how to keep cool is essential to your, and your family's safety.

Common sense and monitoring how your body is reacting to situations will tell you how to stay safe during the heat.   For further info, here are a few things that you should AVOID doing to beat the summer heat.

•  Don't let yourself get thirsty.   Drink regularly throughout the day to stay hydrated and keep your body cool.

•  Don't drink too much alcohol. It will cause your body to lose water.

•  Don't eat heavy meals. Eating heavier foods, like protein, increases your metabolic heat production causing your body to lose more water. Stick with cool, light meals like salads, raw veggies and dip, crackers and cheese, or fruit and a little peanut butter. (Plus, eating cold meals means you don't have to heat up the house by using the oven.)

•  Don't spend too much time in the sun. Not only are sunny areas hotter than shady ones, but also if you get sunburned your body will have a harder time dissipating the heat.

•  Don't stay in places with no air conditioning. Air conditioning drastically reduces heat dangers, even if you're only in it periodically

•  Don't exercise or do strenuous activities during the hottest part of the day.

•  Don't leave children or pets in cars. On a hot, sunny day, temperatures inside a parked car can rise more than 30 degrees per minute -- even with open windows, according to the U.S. Humane Society. Leaving children or pets inside can quickly become deadly.

Keeping these ideas in mind will help you and your family stay cool and safe during the heat.   For even more things to avoid during the heat, please check out this link