Updated: Oct 9, 2020
MYTH #1 - You'll Sweat Out Toxins
Sorry to say, but no matter how much you perspire, you cannot undo yesterday's indulgence with a serious sweat session by working out in a 3-piece jogging suit or heading over for some #hotyoga. Sweat is made up of 99% water, mixed with little bit of salt, carbohydrates, protein and some urea (a nontoxic compound made by the liver). As humans we sweat to cool ourselves, not to clear toxins . . . HOWEVER, working out (not being sedentary) activates our lymphatic system which DOES help us process and remove toxins from our body.
MYTH #2 - If You Sweat a Lot, You'll Stink
Sweat itself doesn't actually have an odor, but when it's mixed with the bacteria on our skin, that's when the B.O. starts to ripen. People who sweat more many actually smell less because the constant moisture their body produces dilutes the bacteria and kinda acts as a mini shower LOL. We also have 2 different types of sweat glands - eccrine (at the face hands and feet - watery sweat) and apocrine (armpits and groin - thicker sweat) and it's the thicker sweat (mmmmm yum) that latches onto the bacteria and gets it to "stink" around. See what I did there?
MYTH #3 - If You Sweat Excessively, It Means You Need a Doctor
Nope, not true. Unless you start to profusely sweat on just one side of your body, indicating a health issue that you may need medical attention for, it may just be an inconvenience or something embarrassing to deal with which is why people might seek topical treatments, injections or even surgery depending on how severe the sweat is.
MYTH #4 - The More You Sweat, the Better Your Workout
This one I hear a lot and it's actually kind of the opposite! Sweat is our body's way of cooling down. If you are super duper good at cooling yourself down, you will sweat more (in theory) but you also need to be hydrated to sweat. And along these lines, water weight is just that. If you sweat off a pound of water, then as soon as you put that water back into your body aka re-hydrate, the weight will come back. So when you're working out, instead of focusing on weight-loss, focus on body composition - fat and muscle ratio to overall body weight.
MYTH #5 - Antiperspirants Cause Cancer
Only about 0.012% of aluminum from deodorants was absorbed through the skin in a study that was conducted with women with breast cancer. There was no difference in concentration in the cancerous tissue compared with other surrounding tissue. If you don't sweat much, you can use an aluminum free deodorant but if you are looking to stay dry, research says that you can use an anti-antiperspirant without concern or fear of cancer.