WHAT IS SWEAT?

What Is Sweat?

 

Sweating is your body’s natural response to temperature changes, exercise and certain situations, such as stress. But why is sweating important? Read on to discover all you need to know about sweat and why it’s necessary.

WHAT IS SWEAT?

When your sweat glands are triggered, they secrete sweat on your skin’s surface. Sweat is made up mostly of water and salt. When it is released it lowers your body’s temperature.

HOW SWEAT WORKS?

When your body reacts to you being in a warm, stressed or physically demanding environment it turns on its natural cooling system – sweating.
Your body has 2.6 million sweat glands, on average. They are found on almost every part of your body – your lips being one of the few places where you don’t sweat.


HOW SWEAT WORKS?

HOW DO SWEAT GLANDS WORK?

Your sweat glands are made up of two main parts

  1. The coiled section – where sweat is produced
  2. The duct – the path your sweat takes to reach the surface of your skin

However, not all sweat glands were created equal. You have two types of sweat glands:

1. ECCRINE SWEAT GLANDS


Eccrine glands are found all over your body, but the highest concentrations are in your palms and the soles of your feet.
Sweat from your eccrine glands is made up of mostly water, salt and potassium.

2. APOCRINE SWEAT GLANDS


Your apocrine glands are found where you have the most amount of hair follicles – your underarms, groin and scalp.
In emotional or stressful situations, you sweat from your apocrine glands. This type of sweat is thicker and contains fatty acids and proteins.

DO MEN SWEAT MORE THAN WOMEN?

Despite women having a higher number of sweat glands, male sweat glands actually produce a higher volume of sweat. A study by the National Strength and Conditioning Association, USA found that even when men and women drank the same amount of fluid during exercise:

  • The women's sweat rate was 0.57 litres per hour
  • The men’s sweat rate was 1.12 litres per hour

In addition, the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw found that while females sweat less than males, they evaporate sweat on their skin more efficiently.
This means a woman is able to adequately cool down her body without as much sweat as a man needs for the same result.

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