Exercise is such an important part of my life. One great thing I get from working out is the detoxifying effect of sweating. This natural body process plays an important role in the proper functioning of our bodies. However, it is also often taken for granted and sometimes hated. To give everyone a greater understanding of sweating, I decided to put together 7 facts about it.
1. What Exactly is Sweating?
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Sweating is the body's most effective cooling mechanism. When our body temperature increases, we produce sweat. When the sweat evaporates from our skin, heat is distributed from our skin to the cooler surroundings.
2. What Causes Us to Sweat?
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There are several factors that cause us to sweat. The type of environment around us can make us sweat. So can exercise intensity and the clothes we wear. Sometimes, our genes determine how much we sweat. The level of fitness and acclimatization to the temperature can also affect the amount of sweat you produce. Various emotions such as fear and nervousness can also result in sweating.
3. Where Does It Come from?
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Sweat is produced by the 2-4 million sweat glands in the body. These glands are found in the outer tissue of the skin. The glands are mainly located on the hands, armpit, feet, and groin. While women have more sweat glands than men, men's glands are more active.
4. What is in Sweat?
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The actual components of sweat vary from person to person. However, the basic elements that make up sweat are water, salt, electrolytes such as potassium, sodium, and chloride. Metabolic waste is also found in sweat.
5. Why do Some People Smell?
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Sweat in itself is odorless. Body odor is produced when bacteria on the surface of the skin meets with sweat. Our diet, emotions, medications, medical conditions, and hormone levels can also affect the odor of sweat.
6. What is Hyperhidrosis?
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Hyperhidrosis is a condition wherein an individual produces an excessive amount of sweat. It can be a congenital or acquired trait. Excessive sweating can occur on the hands or feet, after eating certain foods, or after engaging in certain activities.
7. What Are the Benefits of Sweating?
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Aside from cooling the body, sweating can help rid the body of toxins and harmful substances. Sweating can also cleanse and rejuvenate the skin.
Sweating is something that cannot be avoided. Failure to sweat can have fatal effects on you. Rather than being annoyed or disgusted by sweat, think of all the good things it does for your body.
Top Photo Credit: Wendy A. Hern