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Thursday, July 21, 2005
You perspire to regulate the heat in your body (we're reminded of a grade school teacher who always insisted that pigs sweat but people perspire). If you become too hot, sweat glands in your body produce water droplets on the surface of your skin. As the water evaporates, it provides a cooling effect to your body. It's the same principle used by evaporative water air conditioners.

The majority of the roughly 5 million sweat glands in your body are concentrated on the palms of your hands., the soles of your feet and, to some extent, your armpits. About two-thirds of the glands are in your hands and are controlled by your sympathetic nervous system. So if it's hot and yourhands, feet, and armpits sweat, this is normal.

However, if you are in a stressful situation and are nervous, and angry , embarrassed, or anxious, your entire nervouse system reacts and produces an immediate response called "flight or fight". Your nervous system has sensed danger and must prepare you for one of two options: combat the danger (fight) or run away from it (flight).

Your nervous system calls on all of your bodily functions to prepare you for this imminent danger. You start sweating, your heart beats faster, and you breathe more rapidly. This type of emotionally induced sweating is limited to your hands, feet, and armpits. Even if it's very cold, you will sweat if you are in "flight or fight" situation.

Your palms may sweat for other reasons, such as an affliction that causes your system to produce more perspiration than what is needed to cool your body. Excessive and unnatural sweating can also be caused by hyperthyroidism, psychiatric disorders, menopause, and obesity.

We don't all perspire in the same way because the number of location of sweat glands are unique to each person. Climate also affects how we respond to temperature changes. If you grow up in a hot and humid area, you probably won't sweat that much. However, if you move from that location to a very dry are, you will probably perspire profusely.

It's good to remember that if your body doesn't need cooling and you are sweating, then you are in some type of stressful situation.


Although we use antiperspirant to get rid of body odor, perspiration by itself don't have a bad smell. The foul odor is cause by bacteria eating the debris on our skin.

Some people claim they never perspire. That's because their bodily thermostat is functioning efficiently and the perspiration evaporates the moment their body creates it. If perspiration is running off you, then your thermostat isn't working very well.

Because we have no control over our sympathetic nervous system, which controls perspirations, perspiration can be a factor in polygraph, or lie detector tests. Along with heart rate, blood pressure and respiration, perspiration gives a good due as to whether the person is nervous or anxiuos and thus possibly lying.


Perspiration, heart rate, blood pressure, and respiration are not the only bodily function we cannot control. When we communicate with other people, especially in emotional situations, we may have conscious control over our words but not our body movements. These movements, referred to as "body language"., are often more honest than what we say. Some authorities claim that body language accounts for 93 percent of our communication with others.

Suppose you are talking with a friend and you say, "Did you enjoy the ski trip with your boss?" He may say "It was fine". However, if he doesn't smile and tightens his grip on the paper he's holding, you can probably bet that he didn't have a good time and doesn't want to talk about it right bow. When people's body language contradicts their words, you're better off to go with the body language.

(abstracted from the book of Bill McClain entitled: What Makes Flamingos Pink
posted by infraternam meam @ 1:07 PM  
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Name: infraternam meam
Home: Chicago, United States
About Me: I am now at the prime of my life and have been married for the past 25 years. Sickly at times, but wants to see the elixir vita, so that I will be able to see my grandchildren from my two boys.
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