Summer is great for a lot of reasons, but the extra sweating isn’t one of them. Beyond being uncomfortable and inconvenient, it turns out sweating does offer some benefits. According to experts, there are upsides to sweating, whether it’s from the heat, exercising, or being nervous.
The good things it does for our skin and bodies include:
- Preventing us from overheating - The main reason we sweat is to regulate our body temperature. Dermatologist Dr. Melanie Palm explains that sweat serves “the important function of effectively cooling our bodies.”
- Detoxifies the body - Research shows that sweat glands help our skin get rid of toxins, including alcohol, and that helps boost our immune system. One study found that fitness fanatics had lower levels of heavy metals like mercury and lead in their bodies, which could be from sweating them out.
- Promotes clear skin - Sweat also opens up our pores and prompts them to flush out oil and dirt. But when sweat dries on the skin, that dirt, oil and bacteria can get trapped and cause breakouts, so washing it off is crucial for that clearer skin.
- Helps with weight loss - Sweating can speed up the loss of water weight in the body, but Dr. Robert A. Higgins, president of research and athlete performance and safety at the Korey Stringer Institute at the University of Connecticut explains that it’s only temporary. “It’s not fat mass,” he says, “which is the weight most people have the goal of losing.”
- Lowers the risk of kidney stones - Sweat glands release water to the skin’s surface and less water in the body means you’ll need to use the bathroom fewer times. That leaves less chance for material that can cause kidney stones to be sitting in the kidneys and urinary tract. Ideally, when we sweat more, we drink more water, which helps flush these minerals out of our system.