the beauty of sweat

how perspiration benefits your skin

Sweat it out! When you are experiencing skin breakouts or a lackluster complexion, it is often link to a lack of perspiration. Do some exercise, take hot bath, go to a sauna, practice hot yoga, speak in front of large groups of people, or start menopause! Basically, anything that will make you profusely perspire!

Sweating helps boost the immune system, flush out excess salt, reduce the chance of kidney stones, and keeps you from overheating.

Sweat also helps get rid of toxins in your body. With that being said, heavy sweating, will cause you to lose water and electrolytes. So for all of this to be beneficial, please drink, drink, drink; two to three litres to be precise. Freshly tapped coconut water, alkaline water or just plain filtered spring water are choice beverages.

The traditional sauna is like an oven that heats you from the outside in. There are also infrared saunas which heat you from the inside out, yielding similar results – so either sauna will do your body good. Measurements taken of participants’ skin demonstrated that regular sauna sessions reduce skin sebum production and also contribute to changes in skin pH regulation.[1]

A drop in the skin’s pH, observed with sauna use, could strengthen the skin’s acid mantle. A more acidic environment makes it more difficult for P. acnes to grow compared to the other bacteria on the skin.[1,2] (P. acnes being the main bacterial beastie for creating zits and the like).

But wait, there’s more.

Dermcidin, an antimicrobial protein that prevents the proliferation of P. acnes, is commonly found – guess where – in human sweat! Dermcidin reduces this bad bacteria’s ability to create RNA and proteins necessary for survival.[3,4]

But even if you’re running low on dermcidin, there is still a solution – a salt solution. The salt in your sweat is also toxic to these naughty bacteria. With increased circulation and hydration[5] from your self-induced saunic heat wave, the healing times of any pimple party boo-boos will most likely decrease. All while the moisture content of your stratum corneum (the top layer of your skin) should increase.

Plump, clear, glowing, balanced skin – win, win, win, and win.

Sweat also washes out clogged up debris hanging out in your pores, while simultaneously warming the skin. It allows excess oil to be flushed out when it is still in the liquid state. If you have not broken a heavy sweat in a few months and you have not been extracted by a licensed esthetician in a while, it’s time to start with the extractions yourself.

Those big old plugs of oxidized, solidified oil, salt and dirt are like giant boulders that need to be removed from the stream before the river runs through it. If they have been lodged in there for months, years or decades you know it is going to take a tenacious, highly experienced professional working under a magnifying lamp to get them out.

So hit the gym, jump some rope, bust out some Bikram, steam in the sauna or soak in a hot tub. Do something – do ANYTHING – to dump the deluge.

Now for the piece de resistance. Did you know that saunas increase your metabolism? Research confirms that getting hot (either sauna, steam room, hot tub) after a workout not only ramps up calorie burn but has a beneficial effect on blood sugar levels too.

A study conducted by exercise physiologist Steve Faulkner, Ph.D. showed that soaking in a tub of water at 104 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour increased energy output by 80% and burned 140 calories per hour; comparable to a brisk 30-minute walk.

They also tested the participants’ blood glucose level after eating a meal and then soaking or exercising for one hour. The bathers had a 10% lower post-meal glucose level than the exercisers – probably due to the presence of heat shock proteins released when, well, you get really hot! Heat shock proteins move the glucose out of the blood and into your skeletal muscle reducing blood sugar levels and improving insulin sensitivity[6].

Exercise, eat, soak, then sleep. Yes, in that exact order. An amazing way to end the day and prepare yourself for a glowing tomorrow!