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The Sweaty Truth: What Your Perspiration Really Means

By November 13, 2015 April 16th, 2019 No Comments

It is part of our daily routine and we often wear it as a badge of honor at the end of a hard training session; sweat is part of our lives. So, what do your sweat stains say about you?

The Purpose of Sweat

Perspiration, or sweat, is secreted to help regulate your body temperature. This is why you sweat so much during and after a workout; your body has been working and is getting hot so the glands secrete your sweat to keep you cool.

If sweating is something that is a natural process, then why do we all get so awkward when it is mentioned? Some of the most embarrassing things about sweat are the stains it can leave and the anxiety that maybe your sweat isn’t normal. Below are some common issues and what they really mean:

Yellow Sweat Stains

This likely has less to do with you than it does with your detergent or deodorant. Sweat is naturally clear, but when it reacts with the chemicals on your skin or your clothes it can turn yellow. If this continues to be an issue you may consider switching brands to one that uses fewer chemicals. Or wear a muscle shirt where the fabric has no contact with your pits.

There are cases where a medical condition could cause this. To learn more about Chromhidrosis and associated conditions you can review the symptoms here

White Lines

This fine white stain can be a sign that you are a salty sweater. This means that you may be losing more sodium and other electrolytes in your sweat. This could indicate that you are more prone to hyponatremia if you are only hydrating with water. Be sure to make sure your fluid and fuel intake before, during, and after exercise includes water and foods rich in electrolytes that can be lost in sweat.

Excessive Sweat

You may feel like you are sweating more than everyone else, maybe way more than everyone else, and you could be right. Just like some people grow more hair than others, some people sweat more than others. When it does become excessive it could be classified as hyperhidrosis. If you suspect that you have this, don’t just self-diagnose and move on. In many cases, hyperhidrosis may be a symptom of an underlying medical condition. So there it is: the good, the bad, and the sweaty. Who wants to go for a long run and get extra sweaty?