I have to admit, sweating is not my favorite part of biking or exercise in general. But, whether due to genetics or just an overly-ambitious workout, I’m a rather profuse sweater. Complain as I might, however, it turns out that sweating benefits our bodies in many ways.
Many people wonder whether sweating is good for their body. Although excessive sweating or night sweats might be indicative of a medical problem, released sweat with exercise is good for you. The body sweats, physiologically, as part of a cooling mechanism. This is why people sweat both on hot days and also during exercise. Sweating lowers the body temperature.
But sweating has other health benefits, too.
Is it Good to Sweat?
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Health Benefits of Sweating Include…
- Sweating relieves pain. When you exercise, your brain releases endorphins into your bloodstream. These natural painkillers can ease minor discomforts such as muscle fatigue and body aches.
- Sweating releases toxins from your body. A good workout (that brings on a hearty sweat) can release toxins including alcohol, salt, and cholesterol from your body.
- Sweating regulates moods. Ever felt grumpy going into a ride only to feel refreshed and renewed afterwards? Studies have shown that working up a sweat actually enhances a sense of calm in your body. Those same endorphins that release pain also produce an opiate-life effect, producing a sense of well-being.
- Sweating reduces risk of developing kidney stones. Just another added benefit that comes with sweat! Kidney stones are formed by excess salts that accumulate in the kidneys. People who exercise regularly excrete sodium through sweat, thus lowering their chances of developing painful kidney stones.
- Sweating helps you stay healthy! Want to boost your immune system? Go for a ride and build up a nice sweat. Sweat actually contains dermcidin, which provides antimicrobial and antifungal protection.
- Sweating moisturizes the skin, naturally. Studies have shown that sweat increases skin hydration and regulates skin moisture and tone. Individuals who regularly sweat are shown to be less prone to skin disorders and irregularities. The surface of your skin will thank you for sweating.
- Sweating helps heal wounds. A University of Michigan study showed that sweat glands hold adult stem cell that aid in wound healing and closure.
- Sweating helps fight acne. Even the best of us still get hit with a pimple now and then. Sweating helps open the pores and the perspiration releases bacteria and other ‘gunk’ that clogs them. For best results, scrub your face when showering after a workout to clear away any excess bacteria while your pores are open. It’s true- sweating can help reduce skin infections.
- Sweating is our personal heating and cooling device. We know that sweating helps cool the body, but did you know that regular sweating will actually fine-tune your system so you can better handle temperature fluctuations? It’s true! If you did not sweat, your body would suffer from heat exhaustion with intense exercise.
Next time you work up a sweat, think about all the great benefits that come with it and ride on!
As nationwide bike injury attorneys, we work hard to protect bikers and also promote cycling and fitness throughout the country.