Sweat, Weight Loss, & Outdoor Saunas: The Science Behind the Connection•
Posted on March 13 2023
Sweating maintains body temperature and health. There are two types of sweat: insensible perspiration, which we don't notice, and body sweat, which we can see when it is hot or when we exercise. Both types work to cool the body down.
Sweating also opens pores and removes dirt, debris, and toxins, doing great things for the body. Understanding what sweat is and its function can help us appreciate its health benefits.
What Is Sweat and Why Do We Sweat?
Sweat is a salty liquid produced by the body to cool itself down and reduce overheating. It is made up of 99% water, with small amounts of electrolytes like sodium, chloride, potassium, and magnesium. Sweat also contains proteins, enzymes, and other compounds that help regulate the body’s temperature.
Sweat glands are classified into two types: eccrine glands and apocrine glands. Eccrine glands are found throughout the body, including the hands, feet, forehead, scalp, and armpits. They secrete a watery sweat, or eccrine sweat, which aids in cooling the body when it becomes overheated. Apocrine glands are present in areas like the underarms and groin area; they produce an oilier type of sweat called apocrine sweat.
As we sweat more during exercise or in hot weather, the excess body heat is used to convert beads of sweat into vapor (evaporation), which is the process that cools you down.
What Is the Connection Between Sweating, Weight Loss, and Outdoor Saunas?
The connection between sweating, weight loss, and outdoor saunas is interesting. Sweat production and evaporation require energy and, as a result, the process consumes calories - which is one great reason that outdoor saunas are popular.
Sweating might burn fewer calories than other physical activities, but it still contributes to the total energy expenditure of the body, and keep in mind that we use our saunas on a regular basis, not just once. It all adds up!
Sweating is one of the natural ways the body eliminates waste products. It can help the body with detoxification - the process of removing toxins from the body. This will boost your metabolism and help you lose unwanted fat over time.
Additionally, moderate and controlled water loss from sauna sessions can be beneficial to the body. You don't want to sabotage your weight loss efforts by retaining water weight. Don't underestimate how much losing water weight can help you feel better and look better! It will surely take pounds off the scale!