Unfortunately the machismo of sweat has its pitfalls too. The toll on your body is high. Put simply, sweat depletes you. Not only by dehydrating you, but also by depleting your body of vital nutrients. Even though it looks like water, sweat is more akin to blood. It contains salt, potassium, calcium, and magnesium, as well as important trace minerals like zinc.
That's why sweating is bleeding in Ayurveda. You wouldn't want to bleed your body just to accomplish your fitness goals, would you? Your body has already worked hard to digest, absorb, and infuse precious vitamins and minerals in your blood. Why waste them? Ayurveda suggests you preserve minerals by limiting the amount you sweat. A light sweat is okay. But if you're dripping, you might be overdoing it.
Moderate sweating is beneficial for sluggish Kapha dosha. Dry Vata types have to be more cautious. Pitta types are the most susceptible to heat-stroke and heat exhaustion. Too much sweating can cause pitta to overheat and become dizzy, angry, or have a blood pressure spike.
You can avoid excessive sweating by eating in the shade at a picnic, or bringing a shade umbrella to the beach. Even taking your dog for a short walk in the hot summer sun can leave you feeling exhausted from electrolyte loss. Instead, shift your walking and exercise routines from midday to the morning.
Heat exhaustion, heat stroke, and dehydration are all easily avoidable by keeping cool and replenishing not only water, but electrolytes too as you sweat throughout the day. To your water bottle, add a squeeze of lime, a pinch of mineral salt, and a pinch of sugar in order to make your own sports' drink.
Lack of sweat is also a problem. It means that your body cannot cool itself down when overheated. Take measures to cool down in other ways (getting out of the sun, having cool water, etc.). If you have been in the hot sun, sweating all day and reach a point when you stop sweating, this is a bad sign, indicating dehydration. In both instances, make sure to rehydrate as soon as possible and cool off.
Here are a few rejuvenating, electrolyte rich recipes from Joyful Belly:My Saved Articles | Most Popular
About the AuthorJohn Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda. His approach to Ayurveda exudes a certain ease, which many find enjoyable and insightful. John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda , which specializes in digestive tract pathology & Ayurvedic nutrition. John and his wife Natalie recently published Explore Your Hunger: A Guide to Hunger, Appetite & Food.
John's interest in Ayurveda and digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, including his public service work in South Asia. John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion. John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing. In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots, and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church. Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick. That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.
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I'm curious if sweating from a near infrared sauna is different and more beneficial than sweating from exercising. I'm Vata and find that I feel calmer and more relaxed after 20 minutes in an infrared sauna. While I've read that toxins are eliminated, I'm wondering whether the loss of positive positive minerals makes this practice unwise for Vata, especially one with osteoporosis. Thank you for your wise response.
In Ayurveda, typically a Vata person would receive an oil massage and then do a sauna.