New research from the University of Michigan has found that your sweat glands do more than just make you feel gross and soggy after a workout, embarrass you in front of that cute guy/girl from your yoga class, and ruin your favorite shirt on an unexpectedly hot day. In addition to helping to regulate your body temperature, eccrine glands (the ones that cover most of the surface of your body) also contain a reservoir of adult stem cells that are recruited for the purpose of wound closure and healing - greatly aiding the process of recuperation from ulcers, sores, and abrasions.
Of course, the researchers involved are more interested in the application of this knowledge to developing better drugs to stimulate healing. But I wonder what implications this has, if any, for the role of exercise and the process of sweating in the healing of wounds. My take-away: another reason to exercise more often is that sweating regularly is likely good for the health of your sweat glands, and also for the health of your skin. So not only will you feel awesome, but you will look awesome too!
More details (and the original article) can be found here.
Jesse Jones, LMT
Owner and therapist at Warrior Massage