For many of you, air conditioning may be a way of life, as essential to your home as a floor and ceiling. But, for others, air conditioning just might not be in the cards, or your house. Perhaps your residence isn't suited for air conditioning, maybe you have too many other home improvement projects to focus on, or perhaps it's simply too expensive.


For those of you nodding in agreement, you may know that summer without air conditioning causes discomfort and frustration, as well as a desire to sue Mother Nature. However, even without A/C there are a few things you can do to beat the heat in your house, before the heat beats you.


Drink Water: Sitting in a hot house can be comparable to sitting in a sauna: if the sweat soaked towel fits, wear it. This means you must remember to do two things: put on deodorant and drink water. Even if you're not thirsty, drinking water is the only way to replace the fluids you lose from sweating. Sports drinks, such as Gatorade, are also good to consume but soda, sugary juice, alcohol, and caffeinated beverages (such as iced coffee or iced tea) work in reverse: they tend to expedite the process of dehydration.


Take a Cold Shower: Taking a cold shower, keeping your head cool, or even dipping your hands in ice water are all tasks that can minimize heat. They might not be the most relaxing things, particularly the cold shower, but they are simple and effective. They are also tasks that will probably feel pretty welcoming after being showered in your own sweat for long periods of time.


Don't add to the Situation: Your house is hot enough without you literally and figuratively adding fuel to the fire. For this reason, it's important to avoid things that will create more heat: don't turn on the oven or stove, don't light candles, and don't wash dishes or clothes in warm water. All of these acts can increase the temperature of your house by a few degrees, which might not sound like a lot but will certainly feel like it.


Consume Food that's Spicy: It might seem weird to eat something with spice when your body is already hot enough, but spicy food will make you perspire, which ultimately helps cool you off. Spicy food that is extreme will also force you to drink more water, perhaps gallons of it. If you don't enjoy spicy food, or don't have access to it, still be vigilant in what you eat and don't consume warm meals such as soups or stews.


Stay Away from the Sun: There are undoubtedly places in your house where the sun seeps in and beats down on whatever it can: an oak desk, the carpet, your cat, yourself. For this reason, it's important to stay away from rooms that are particularly sunny, such as rooms with no curtains or those that face in the direction of sunlight. If possible, try to get away from rising temperatures by staying as low as possible: your basement will always be the coolest place in your house.


Don't Wear Hats or Socks and Shoes: In the wintertime, you may notice your body becomes quite a bit cooler if you don't have anything on your feet or your head. This is also true in summer. Instead of wearing socks and shoes around the house, go barefoot and in lieu of wearing a hat, wear nothing on your head, except maybe a wet towel.


Keep Windows and Doors Closed During the Day: The feeling that your house is stuffy might cause you to open a window or crack your front door just a smidge, but doing so when it is hotter outside than it is inside will increase the temperature of your house. Instead of letting in all of the hot air, keep windows and doors closed and keep your curtains and window shades drawn. When the temperature outside gets cooler, or become breezy, you will benefit from opening a window and cracking a door. But, until this happens, rely on your ceiling fan, and the above tips.