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What “Toxins” are you Sweating Out

What “Toxins” are you Sweating Out

Can you really sweat out toxins?

These days you see the word “detox” on just about anything (and yes, at kaia naturals we use it to describe a process you go through when transitioning from antiperspirant to deodorant). A common misconception however, is that sweating cleanses your organs and gets rid of toxins. While sweat does provide certain health benefits, there is no scientific evidence that proves sweating detoxes your organs. To better understand what sweating actually does, I am going to give you a breakdown of what happens to your body when you sweat.  

 

What’s In Sweat

Sweat is actually made up of 99% water, and 1% trace elements of sodium chloride (salt), lactic acid and urea.

The Journal of Environmental & Public Health states that there is some validity to sweating minuscule amounts of metals from your body, but sweating is not an effective means of excreting toxins. 

 

How Sweating Actually Works

Sweating serves as an air conditioner for your body. Fluids are released from the two to four million sweat glands that control your body temperature. Most of them are eccrine glands, which are found in the feet, palms, forehead, cheeks, and armpits. They release a clear and odorless fluid that helps your body cool down through evaporation.

The other type of sweat gland are apocrine glands and can be found in the armpits and genital regions. They produce a thick liquid that causes body odor when it comes into contact with bacteria.

These glands are activated by nerves and respond to the following stimuli:

  • Messages from the brain indicating that the body is too hot
  • Hormones
  • Emotions
  • Physical activity or exercise
  • Medications
  • Foods
  • Temperature

sweating is not detoxing kaia naturals

Image by Li Sun

 

The Way Your Body Actually Detoxes

Detoxification actually occurs in your kidneys and liver, which are not linked to sweating. That is why charcoal only works as a form of detoxification when you ingest it in the form of a pill after a hard night of drinking or when a doctor or pharmacist prescribe it for poison control. As a topical application, charcoal has the ability to draw out impurities from your pores but not to detox internal organs unless ingested.  

 

The True Benefits of Sweating

Sweating simply does not remove toxins in your bloodstream the same way your kidneys and liver do. That being said, sweating performs other important health functions, such as:

  • Muscle Recovery: Sweating increases circulation throughout the skin and blood flow, which encourages cellular regeneration. This is why the sauna, a hot bath, and exercise are often used as forms of physical therapy for injuries.
  • Supports Skin Health When our body temperature rises, it increases the blood flow to the skin. Over the long term, this will have a positive impact onskin health.
  • Cardiovascular: Sweating promotes blood flow, which prevents plaque from forming in your arteries.

Looking at the Romans, the Turks, Native Americans and Scandinavians, sweating has been integral to wellness in many civilizations and cultures through the ages. There certainly is ancient wisdom and tried-and-true validity to its health benefits. 

While sweating does not remove toxins from your body, there is plenty of scientific evidence from the medical community that embraces the health benefits of sweating as a form of cellular movement.


If you have any comments, questions and suggestions for articles you would like to see or learn more about, leave a comment below.

Feature Image by Anh Nguyen

How to Stop Grinding Your Teeth at Night Naturally

How to Stop Grinding Your Teeth at Night Naturally

Like many of you, I grind my teeth at night and this is unfortunately a problem I have dealt with for a while. If you clench your fists or scrunch your neck, these are signs that you probably respond to stress with tension. Teeth grinding may be something you experience too as a result.

 

The Solution that Dentists Recommend

Not only is teeth grinding unpleasant, but it is a habit that has led to expensive dental bills for me. My dentist recommends that I wear a mouth guard, but I hate it. For anyone who has worn one, it is uncomfortable and creates a slobbering mess. I notice it the most when I wake up in the middle of the night.  

 

How I Got to the Root of the Problem

In an attempt to put away the mouth guard and as someone who suffers from sleep issues as well, I turned to natural remedies to help me relax since most of my teeth grinding has to do with stress. With this direct correlation, the more at ease I became before bed, the better my sleep was though the night. Before I share with you what works for me, I want to preface that you should continue to wear a mouth guard until you learn to relax and calm down before bedtime

 

Natural Remedies that Help Stop My Teeth Grinding

  • Turmeric Milk: Tryptophan is an amino acid in milk that helps the nervous system relax, while turmeric acts as a pain reliever to reduce jaw pain and headaches.
  • Magnesium: You can take it in the form of a pill or take a bath with Epsom salts, which will help bind to the serotonin in your brain to help you relax and alleviate stress.
  • Hot Baths: If you are not a fan of baths, you can soak a washcloth in warm water instead. Warm water helps your jaw relax, so taking a bath before you sleep can help immensely.
  • Essential Oils: Spray your pillow with some. Personally, I love to use the premade ones. Spray them on a piece of wool or silk and slip it into your pillow case for maximum impact.
  • Muscle Rub Balm: My tension area is generally in my neck, so applying some balm helps the muscles in that area to relax and prevents teeth grinding. The smell tends to help as well.

 

stop grinding teeth at nightImage by Jay Mantri

 

How Your Senses Solve Your Problems

I am always amazed at how often essential oils come up as research-backed solutions for relaxation. I always believed in the power of the sensory and it is more apparent than ever after trying these natural remedies. Not only have I have gotten to the root of my problem by reducing stress, but it stopped my teeth grinding and gave me the restful sleep I need to thrive in my daily life.

What are some other tried and true natural remedies that work for you? Please share in the comments below. 

Feature Image by Gabriel Matula

4 Proven Sleep Tips From An Insomniac

4 Proven Sleep Tips From An Insomniac

For years I have suffered with insomnia. Lying in bed at 4:00am wide awake, staring at the ceiling, I am often triggered by worry and anxiety of impending deadlines and endless things-to-do. Yes like many women, I find things to worry about and cannot stop the inner chatter in order to get a better sleep.  

I want to share four simple sleep-inducing tips that have had a positive impact on my quality and duration of sleep.

 

1. CHOOSE THE RIGHT FOOD.

There are a couple suggestions here depending on if you are having trouble falling asleep, or if you are having trouble staying asleep, and quite frankly, for me it’s both.

 

IF YOU ARE FINDING IT HARD TO FALL ASLEEP:

Snack on foods high in tryptophan at night, as tryptophan helps produce, a hormone which promotes sleep. Foods that contain tryptophan include pumpkin seeds, turkey, tofu, eggs, walnuts, and seaweed.

 

IF YOUR PROBLEM LIES IN STAYING ASLEEP:

Your blood sugar may be dropping during the night. When blood sugar drops, your body kicks up production of stress hormones, anxiously waking you up at night. Try a small snack containing complex carbohydrates to prevent these blood sugar dips. Some of my faves include sweet potatoes, beans, nuts, quinoa, and steel cut oats.

 

2.  AVOID SCREEN TIME AFTER SUNSET

At least 1-2 hours before bed because technology screens emit blue light to our eyes, which triggers our brain to stop producing melatonin (our sleep hormone). Sometimes the very things you read trigger more things to worry about. So steer clear of those emails and texts, and clear your mind.

 

GETTING NATURAL LIGHT FIRST THING IN THE MORNING

Try to aim for 30 minutes in the morning, and get the sun into your eyes to make sure the proper hormones are signalled.

 

get better sleep tub imagePhoto by Jared Rice

 

3. TAKE A BATH

Taking a bath in hot water before bed is the easiest thing that helps me fall asleep. This is how it works: your core body temperature drops as your body works up a sweat from a hot bath.  Our body temperature naturally decreases as evening rolls around, signalling to our body it’s time for sleep. The drop in body temp post bath helps mimic this signal.

Taking a hot bath with a BLEND of essential oils has been proven to be better than with just one scent such as lavender.  It is believed that using a combination of several oils may have mood-enhancing effects that indirectly improve sleep by improving your mood. 

 

4. DRINKING TEA BEFORE BED- IS THIS GOOD OR BAD?

Tea is nature’s calming brew. It is one of the most commonly consumed drinks in the world, and is getting the attention of research for it’s healing and restoring properties. Research does show that sipping on caffeine-free hot herbal tea has a calming and soothing affect and can reduce stress and anxiety.

Taking these active steps to calm the body and mind before bed reduces anxiety and increases my chances of falling asleep and then (fingers crossed, staying asleep).

 

We hope these tips work for you! Share some of your secrets for falling asleep below. 

Feature image by Lina Kivaka