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Posted by on Aug 10, 2015 in Tell Me Why |

Why Do We Sweat?

Why Do We Sweat?

Sweating plays an important role in the body. Sweating is one of the ways the body is able to cool off when we become too warm. When we exercise, our muscles produce extra heat. The sun, too, heats up the body on a hot day. The body would become much too hot if it was unable to get rid of some of this excess heat. Most of this heat escapes from the skin when we sweat.

Sweat is made in glands of the skin, which produce a watery fluid and fluid containing substances such as proteins and lipids.  We sweat from up to 5 million sweat glands located all over the skin on our body. The sweat, or perspiration, these glands produce flows out of openings (pores) in the skin. As the sweat evaporates into the air, it carries away some of the heat, and we feel cooler.

We don’t just sweat when we are hot. It’s also normal for people to sweat when they’re nervous because emotions can affect the sweat glands. However, sweating that is triggered by emotions or stress only happen in certain areas of the body, such as the armpits, palms and head.

Our body also produces sweat during hormonal changes and it helps to play a role in fighting infections. Normally our bodies produce almost 1 liter of sweat per day, however most of this evaporates as soon as it is produced so we don’t notice it.

Content for this question contributed by Lorraine Martin, resident of, Cranford, Union County, New Jersey, USA