We sweat while running, exercise, do hard work, or a long stay in the heat. Sweating is our body’s way of eliminating harmful substances and lowering the temperature. However, if your skin is soaked with sweat in some places, even when you are not straining, you probably suffer from hyperhidrosis – excessive sweating.
Are you reluctant to lift your arm when you need to grasp the handle in public transport, because the sweat already left a stain on your shirt under your arm, even though you just left the house? Do you, almost reflexively, wipe the palm of your jeans before you do anything because you know that it’s wet? Sweating is a normal process, in which about four million subcutaneous sweat glands regulate our body temperature.
A harmless disorder?
In most cases, hyperhidrosis is not a cause for concern – emerges in childhood or adolescence, and incompletely healthy people; in that case, we are talking about focal hyperhidrosis, which always disappears during sleep. Specialists assume that this disorder is caused by a minor “defect” in the nervous system and by genetic predisposition. Focal hyperhidrosis usually occurs on both sides of the body; the hands, face, groin, armpits, feet, or the area around the genitals are most commonly affected. Although not a health hazard, this type of disorder can make people very uncomfortable in the company, and they tend to withdraw into themselves.
When do you need to be worried?
On the other hand, in a much smaller number of cases, hyperhidrosis may indicate a more serious illness, such as disturbances in the thyroid gland, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and even cancer. In this case, we are talking about secondary hyperhidrosis, and its first sign may be sweating at night, which does not affect only certain parts of the body. In addition to these diseases, excessive sweating can be caused by pregnancy, menopause, and some medications. Therefore, before any medicines consult a doctor about side effects, or read the instructions.
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When it comes to the treatment of hyperhidrosis, the least painful is botox, the effects of which can last from six months to a year and involves blocking the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. In the case of mild hyperhidrosis, antiperspirants might work, but they can sometimes cause irritation. Secondary hyperhidrosis is treated with anticholinergic drugs, the use of which may be accompanied by nausea, dry mouth, urinary retention, and constipation. If hyperhidrosis occurs on the palms, soles of the feet, or armpits, iontophoresis is an option; direct current therapy. There is also the option for surgery.
What to avoid putting in your body
Obesity, stress, and inadequate nutrition are often triggered for excessive sweating. If you add too much salt to your dishes, your body will sweat a lot trying to take out the excess sodium. Mass industrial and processed foods may also cause hyperhidrosis, because that kind of food is harder to digest, and if you like hot peppers, do not be surprised if your sweat glands start working hard. Namely, the heat of spicy foods affects the body in the same way as exposure to heat, and it is trying to cool down in every way. If you can not imagine the morning without a cup of hot black coffee, you should find another morning ritual, because caffeine stimulates the sweat glands, and the same goes for cigarettes and alcohol.
Water – the best protection
If you sweat more than you should, especially in the summer months, always keep a bottle of water on hand, and do not wait for you to be thirsty to open it. Hydration is the easiest and fastest way to put sweating under control. When the body is hydrated, it will not have to strain to regulate its temperature. In doing so, drinking at least eight glasses of water a day, will not only regulate the sweating but you will also get extra energy, it will improve your mood and memory, and it can be the first step towards losing excess weight. Drinking enough water can also prevent constipation and increase your physical performance, which is particularly important for those who train intensively.
Fresh fruit – a great choice
Summer presents us with delicious fruits, which can help to put an end to excessive sweating. In fact, water makes 80 percent of the most delicious fruits. Every day, drink at least a glass of tomato juice and enjoy at least fifteen berries of sweet grapes as a snack. Watermelon is also a very tasty ally because it is mostly water, but you should not have it immediately after a meal, nor mix it with other fruits, because it is significantly more difficult to digest and indigestion may increase the secretion of sweat. Eat lemons and keep in mind that lemon juice prevents sweating armpits better than deodorants. Vinegar, coconut oil, and baking soda all have the same effect.
Fish and cereal
Since it is important for the normal functioning of the nervous system, the lack of B-complex vitamins in the body can cause sweating and can worsen hyperhidrosis. To prevent this, have oatmeal or other whole grains for breakfast; instead of white, have some whole grain bread. Note that the B-complex vitamins are not stored in the body, and must be renewed every day. Avocados, sweet potatoes, carrots, and peas are also effective, as well as foods rich in protein, such as fish and eggs. On the other hand, you can eat a handful of almonds once in a while as a snack; almonds are rich in calcium so they regulate the body temperature, and therefore reduce sweating. Broccoli and green leafy vegetables also contain calcium. Put cold-pressed olive oil in salads and other meals; it stimulates digestion and regulates sweating.
Milk: Yes or no?
Whole cow’s milk can worsen the symptoms of hyperhidrosis so you should avoid it. However, if you replace it with low or no-fat milk, you will say goodbye to excessive sweating. Yogurt is also effective in the struggle with excessive sweating and acts as a probiotic. On the other hand, people suffering from hyperhidrosis are not recommended hot tea, but they are very much advised to consume cold peppermint or sage tea (especially effective in the case of night sweats caused by menopause).
Recommendations for daily meals
1. For breakfast, eat oatmeal with blueberries. For snack treat yourself to a slice of watermelon, and for lunch have some mackerel with quinoa. For dinner, eat two slices of whole-grain bread coated with fat-free cream cheese, and before going to bed, drink a cup of sage tea.
2. Start your day with two large apples. For a snack, eat a handful of almonds. For lunch, serve tomato soup, sweet potatoes, and carrots. For dinner, enjoy a salad with chicken and avocado seasoned with olive oil.
3. Have whole grain muesli with dried fruit for breakfast, grapes as a snack, and salmon with broccoli for lunch. For dinner, take a slice of whole-grain bread with young cheese and drink a glass of tomato juice.