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It’s Normal to Sweat More After Exercising

Do you know why you sweat more after you finish exercising than you do while you exercise? Your body temperature varies throughout the day, going from around 97 degrees in the early morning to about 99 degrees in the early evening. Exercise raises body temperature considerably. When you exercise, more than 70 percent of the energy that powers your muscles is lost as heat. Less than 30 percent drives your muscles. Athletic competition can drive temperatures as high as 105 degrees without harming the athletes.

To keep your body temperature from rising too high, your heart pumps large amounts of heat in the blood from your hot muscles to your skin and you sweat. The sweat evaporates and cools your body. The amount of sweat that your body produces depends on the temperature of the blood that flows through your brain. When the temperature of the blood rises, you sweat more. During exercise, your heart beats rapidly to pump blood to bring oxygen to your muscles and to pump the hot blood from the muscles to the skin where the heat can be dissipated. When you stop exercising, your heart slows down also, pumping less blood to the skin. The heat accumulates in your muscles, causing blood temperature to rise higher, so you sweat more right after you finish exercising than during exercise.

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Dear Dr. Mirkin: I’ve started a walking program. Is there a way to increase my speed without getting injured?

Walking is one of the safest and most effective sports for fitness, but to become fit, you have to move fairly fast. You should exercise vigorously enough to increase your heart rate at least 20 beats a minute more than when you rest. Walking at a leisurely pace will not raise your heart rate very much. You can increase your speed by taking longer steps or by moving your feet at a faster rate.

To lengthen your stride, swivel your hips so that you reach out further forward with your feet. This causes you to twist your body from side to side, which forces your toes to point to the outside when your feet touch the ground. By pointing your feet forward after your heel strikes the ground, you will gain a few inches. To move your feet at a faster rate, you have to move your arms at a faster rate also. Every time one leg moves forward, the arm on the same side moves back and the arm on the other side moves forward. For every step forward, there is an equal number of arm movements forward. To move your arms faster, you have to keep your elbows bent. The fulcrum of your arm swing is at your shoulder. The straighter your elbows, the longer your arms swing as a pendulum from your shoulder, reducing the frequency of arm swings. Bending your elbows shortens the swing and allows you to move faster.

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Dear Dr. Mirkin: My husband tells me I have terrible halitosis. Is there any treatment that’s not just a cover-up?

Bad breath can usually be cured. It can be caused by food rotting in the mouth, stomach acid regurgitating up to the mouth, or infections releasing chemicals that smell. Look for white dots on your tonsils that are usually foul-smelling bits of decayed food that your saliva has turned white. You can remove them by gargling after meals or by rubbing a Q-tip against your tonsils.

If you have belching or burning in you chest or abdomen, you may have acid backing up from your stomach. Your doctor can order a blood test for helicobacter, the germ that causes stomach ulcers. If it is positive, you can often be cured by taking antibiotics for one week. Another cause is an infection in your mouth, teeth, gums, throat or esophagus. Your dentist should look for an infection and order a throat culture. If the culture is positive, you can be cured with the appropriate antibiotic. Even if no disease-causing bacteria are found, you can still ask for a trial treatment with antibiotics. There are so many different germs in your mouth that it is impossible to tell whether a germ that is found there is causing the odor or is a normal inhabitant of your mouth.

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Dear Dr. Mirkin: I’ve just been diagnosed with type II diabetes. Is it safe for me to start an exercise program?

Check with your doctor first, but I hope he or she will explain to you that exercise can help to save your life. Diabetics suffer heart attacks, strokes, blindness, deafness, nerve and kidney damage, amputations and more. All these horrible effects are caused by blood sugar levels rising too high after meals, forcing sugar to attach to the surface membranes of cells. The sugar is then converted to sorbitol which damages the cells. So the key to preventing complications of diabetes is to prevent blood sugar levels from rising too high after meals.

Exercise helps to prevent blood sugar levels from rising too high. It uses up stored sugar in muscles and liver, so after you eat, your liver and muscles rapidly remove sugar from the bloodstream and prevent sugar levels from rising too high. A regular exercise program can prolong the lives of all diabetics. To get the most benefit from your program, pick two activities, one that stresses your upper body such as rowing or swimming and one that stresses you lower body, such as walking or cycling, and do them on alternate days. Start out easy and build up your strength and endurance gradually to avoid injuries.

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Recipe of the Week:

Paella
Make this wonderful Spanish seafood dish with your favorite cooked whole grains instead of the traditional white rice; it’s easy, healthful and delicious!

List of Diana's Healthful Recipes

June 27th, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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