Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Article # 482. Does Working out With Sweats Burn More Calories?

 


Working out in sweats causes your body to sweat more because it can't cool itself down as effectively. However, sweating more doesn't burn more calories. In addition, wearing sweats on a hot day or during an intense workout increases your risk of developing dangerous heat-related illnesses such as heatstroke.

Basics
Your body produces sweat to cool itself down. Sweating lowers your core body temperature when it evaporates on your skin. Wearing sweats -- especially plastic or rubber sweat suits -- makes it difficult or impossible for sweat to evaporate, so your body temperature rises and produces more sweat to try to cool itself down. However, sweating more doesn't help you burn more calories or lose more weight. You may seem to lose more weight after working out in sweats, but that's just water weight, which you will quickly regain.

Warning
Your body doesn't burn more calories or melt away fat at high body temperatures. However, an increase in your core body temperature does put you at risk for several heat-related illnesses, such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Exercising in sweats also makes it more likely that you'll become dehydrated. The National Collegiate Athletic Association banned rubber sweat suits in 1997 after three wrestlers died wearing sweat suits in hot weather.


Recommendations
Wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing that allows your skin to breathe. If it's cold, wear several layers so you can remove layers as you get warmer. If it's hot, try to exercise in the morning or evening, when it is cooler. If you want to burn more calories, work out for a longer period or increase the intensity of your workout.

Avoiding Dehydration
Drinking water before, during and after an activity helps you avoid dehydration. Weigh yourself before and after exercising and drink enough water to replace the water weight you lost. Drinking lots of water is especially important if you sweat profusely or work out in hot, humid weather. In addition, avoid drinks that contain caffeine or alcohol, because these drinks cause dehydration.

Danger Signs
Stop exercising if you have a headache or feel weak, dizzy or nauseous. Move to a cool place and contact your doctor if you don't feel better quickly. Seek immediate medical help if you feel confused, experience rapid and shallow breathing, stop sweating, faint or have a seizure. These symptoms may indicate heatstroke, which can be fatal.

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