Today we are talking about one of my favourite topics - sweat and why it's a good thing. My top selling all natural deodorant is a product that you use to help prevent odour but still allows your body to sweat, unlike a chemical-laden anti-perspirant whose goal is to stop perspiration before it starts. I get an awful lot of questions and comments from first time users of natural deodorants that say "but I hate feeling sweaty because that's when I stink!". I actually love to educate people and tell them it is not the sweat that makes you stink, it is the bacteria that's in your underarm that makes you stink.
Here's a quick science and anatomy lesson. An area of the brain called the hypothalamus contains nerve cells that sense the core temperature of the body and the temperature at the surface of the skin. An increase in the basic metabolic rate, through things like exercise or heat, causes the core and the surface of the body to heat up, triggering the hypothalamus to cool the body by activating the sympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nerves in turn prompt the sweat glands in the armpits and all over the rest of the body to step up their sweat production. The aprocine glands, found mostly in the groin and armpits, secrete an oily sweat that produces odour because of the bacteria that is already present on your skin.
So here's what we do about it to make natural deodorant actually work for you. First of all, be sure you are thoroughly bathing and paying special attention to the underarms and groin area with a soap that is natural and free of harmful chemicals and fragrances (I'm a big fan of natural, artisan-made goat's milk soap with essential oils and herbs). Next, you want to apply a natural deodorant that has anti-bacterial essential oils such as tea tree oil and coconut oil which also kills bacteria. Finally, make sure the deodorant has sweat absorbing powders such as baking soda (aluminum free of course), arrowroot, and perhaps even a clay. These powders and clays will help to absorb some of the sweat but they will still allow your body to sweat out harmful toxins and to do it's job of cooling you down.
When you switch to a natural deodorant, it is quite typical for your body to adjust and I have found that after about a week or so you will be used to and won't feel sweaty at all. If you are concerned and feel you are sweating more than is normal, I suggest you book a visit to your doctor to see if there is an underlying issue to probe further.
So sweat the small stuff and enjoy knowing your body is doing what it is meant to do. You can feel good knowing you are putting something healthy on your skin and not stifling what nature intended, and that if it's a good quality deodorant it should actually work! You don't need to compromise your health in order to avoid bad body odour.