How I Keep My Tiny Apartment Cool Without Air Conditioning

The year 2018 is shaping up to be one of the hottest on record here in Ontario. It’s only the beginning of July and already there have been numerous days with extreme heat warnings and even heat-related deaths in the GTA.

It’s times like these that I wish (and so does the rest of the world) I had an air conditioner. I even know who I’d get to install it (if you live in the GTA, would definitely recommend you check out AtlasCare for air conditioning service — I’ve spend time with them on work-related assignments and they’re great.) Sadly, I live in an apartment without central air, and I have no room for a portable/window AC.

So how am I surviving in a tiny apartment without air conditioning? On the upside, it definitely helps that I live in a low-rise building and not a densely-populated tower. On the downside, I’ve managed to cram 100+ gallons of heated aquariums into my space, which constantly generate heat 24/7. That’s a challenge.

There’s no secret to staying cool without air conditioning — I just follow specific routine. It doesn’t cost me anything, and it makes a big difference.

Here’s how I do it:

  1. Cover windows during the day
  2. Don’t turn on the oven
  3. Create a cross-breeze
  4. Turn on the ceiling fan
  5. Take cool showers

1. Cover Windows During the Day

Windows are a huge heat source on sunny days. I didn’t realize what a difference it makes until I started covering them up. Since my lease doesn’t let me put UV-blocking film on my windows, I block them best as I can with blackout curtains.

2. Don’t Turn on the Oven

The oven is another heat source you should actively avoid if you don’t have AC. It takes a long time for the heat generated from cooking to dissipate in a small space. Use the microwave instead. You’d be surprised how many things you can cook in a microwave (seriously, I cooked microwave pancakes the other day!)

3. Create a Cross-breeze

Once the clock strikes 6PM and the sun starts setting, I immediately open the windows at both ends of my apartment to create a cross-breeze. The cool breeze makes it so much easier to fall asleep in the summer (the ideal temperature for sleeping is between 15 to 19 degrees, according to science).

4. Turn on the Ceiling Fan

Ceiling fans don’t actually create cool air, but the help by pushing warm air down to the floor and walls. It can make a world of difference in a small space. Make sure yours is spinning counterclockwise, or it’ll have the opposite effect!

5. Take Cool Showers

When you’re living in 450 square feet of space, taking a hot shower will warm up the whole apartment. Cool showers are the way to go in the summer. If you can’t stand cool water for long, I’d suggest taking a warm shower and making it as quick as possible.

10 Foods for Relaxation

Life has ups and downs. No one can avoid experiencing a stressful life. It can start with you, in your family, friends, people in the neighborhood, community or in the workplace. We can find different ways to relax. It can be done by exercising, counseling or eating. Yes, eating can relieve stress! There are specific foods you can eat to achieve your relaxing state. Foods for relaxation boost endorphins that help us calm down.

Here are the top 10 foods for relaxation:

  1. Celery

It is considered as an antidote or tonic to those people suffering from nervous tension. Taking a daily ingestion of celery will lower the blood pressure that helps you to relax better.

  1. Cold Water Fish

Examples are mackerel, tuna, salmon, and sardines. All have high in omega-3 fatty acids. The omega-3 increases serotonin levels and defeat the production of anxiety-related hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Also lower high blood pressure.

  1. Milk

A quick calming effect, especially when its warm. It also contains tryptophan. This compound helps in the production of serotonin. Serotonin induces the feeling of pleasure and helps you have a good sleep. Cold milk is advice to take during the day to prevent drowsiness. Drinking milk is rich in calcium which also makes you calm.

  1. Honey

It is known to contain high in tryptophan. That helps lessen the anxiety and relax the nerve. It is also known rich in potassium which has a soothing effect on the brain and body. The role of potassium is to contest stress hormones in the body and the acids to relax the nervous system.

  1. Oatmeal

It is sugar-free but with a complex carbohydrate which enhances the absorption of tryptophan. That leads to the production of serotonin. The result is the brain and the body will feel relax. It also has Vitamin B6.

  1. Vegetable Soup

It gets rid of foreign bodies and infections from your body. Soups that have vegetables like green peppers, tomatoes, carrots with spices like garlic, spinach, thyme and many more, help you to improve your health.

  1. Bananas

Rich in potassium and magnesium, known to be a muscle relaxants.

  1. Dark Chocolate

Contains serotonin, endorphin, and dopamine, which are hormones for the appeasing of stress level in the brain. 70% of cacao will help you relax.

  1. Nuts and seeds

Rich in magnesium, selenium, zinc, vitamin E and vitamin B-complex. It helps to relax the brain when taken in large quantities. Taking to much is not advisable because of high sodium.

  1. Eggs

It a source of amino acids like milk that is packed with tryptophan.