Are you sweating too much?
We're all familiar with why we sweat: when our bodies get heated, perspiring cools us off to maintain a healthy body temperature. But there are other benefits to sweating.
By Ericka Rodriguez
There is nothing more embarrassing than sweating: on a date or in front of coworkers, there are just some places and moments when we should be able to turn off our ability to sweat. The bad news is that we can't control it - the good news is that it helps our body by providing a necessary function that allows us to lead healthy and active lives. If this information is not enough to sell you on the upside of a good sweat, we provide more information and benefits on why we have to sweat.
We're all familiar with why we sweat: when our bodies get heated, perspiring cools us off to maintain a healthy body temperature. But there are other benefits to sweating, such as:
- Allowing your body to work harder while exercising
- Helps keep skin clean with its natural antibiotics
- Improves skin tone
- In large amounts helps slow down early aging skin effects and damage
- Removes many toxins from the body
- Burns calories and when exercising, helps fat exit the body
When it's a problem
For the most part, if we are healthy, we only deal with sweating when it's hot or we've been pushing our body beyond its physical comfort level. Still, there are times when how much we sweat can be an indicator of a more serious underlying condition. Depending on the other symptoms you may be experiencing, sweat can be an indicator of a range of issues including hyperthyroidism (an overacting thyroid gland) and hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). At the more severe end, it can even help identify something life-threatening like a heart attack or certain cancers like lymphomas.
It may be hard to differentiate between normal and excessive sweating (called hyperhidrosis), but if you study the pattern of when you sweat and why, you can make an appointment with your health care provider to make sure nothing more serious is going on. If you're perspiring for no reason, and there's no explanation for it, it may be your body trying to tell you something.
Can you control it?
For the most part, we control our sweating every day by using an antiperspirant. The chemicals used in these antiperspirants help to plug your sweat glands and prevent those embarrassing armpit stains from happening. If you're really concerned about it, Botox can also help with the sweating that occurs on the hands, feet, underarms, and forehead, and there are medications that provide some measure of control.
Many experts believe that since a large part of perspiring is mental (caused by anxiety), a safer way to attack the problem is through meditation or any methods that help keep your nerves intact. Finding ways to reduce the stress either at home or at work can go a long way to helping you keep you cool.
While it's not the most feminine thing about us, the fact is sweating keeps us healthy and allows us to be active. If you think you may sweat abnormally compared to others, visit a health care provider and have it checked out to make sure you're okay. Otherwise, sweat and be proud - your body is doing exactly what it needs to keep you going!