Updated: Apr 1
...NO, it is NOT detox from sweating
I was planning to write a about how sweating is good for you because it detoxes the body but as I was researching how exactly this works I came across some different findings. Turns out “Sweating out toxins is a myth”. Erika Engelhaupt explains in her article in National Geographics that the poor scientists “have been screaming this into their pillows for years” and new research is backing this up.
If you think about it. It kind of makes sends. We sweat when our body is in need of cooling down not because it needs to get rid of toxins. That is the job of our liver and kidney and we wouldn’t want them start feeling useless and go into existential crisis mode. So let’s give our kidneys and liver the deserved credit for the detoxing job that they are doing and treat them well.
With every organ feeling happy and appreciated I was wondering if there are any other benefits of getting all hot and sweaty during a workout. Especially a dance fitness workout.
So here is what I found out:
Get high on your own juices
Endorphins and Dopamine make it possible. No, they are not new fancy vitamins. They are neurotransmitter produced by your own body.
Endorphins are chemicals in the brain that pass along signals from one brain cell to the other. They help block sensations of pain and are also responsible for the feeling pleasure. In an article written in realhealthmag.com I learned that based on a scientific study made by the University of Turku in Finland high intensity interval training exercises significantly boost the release of endorphins. So I guess it is safe to say that participating in a dance fitness class based on high intensity interval training will leave you with nice endorphin rush.
But endorphins are not the only brain juices that are flowing when we get sweaty in a dance fitness class. The mood enhancing neurtransmitter Dopamine comes along for the ride as well. In a bbc article I discovered that researchers from McGill University in Montreal had found out in a study that the levels of dopamine are 9% higher when the volunteers listened to music they really enjoyed.
Endorphins from high intensity interval training plus Dopamine from listening to awesome music equals an awesome mood boost after a dance fitness class. Now this is the kind of maths I like and it is all backed up by science not just me telling you how awesome I feel after a dance fitness class.
A word of caution though. I would not want any scientist to have to scream into their pillow when reading my blog. Neuroscience is a little more complicated than that and there is a lot of research done all around the world by some amazing scientist. There is still a lot that is unknown about how our brain works and there is no scientific formula for happiness.
If you would like to know more about how happiness and the brain I can highly recommend the book “The Happy Brain” by Dean Burnett. It is a super fun and entertaining read and really brings neuroscience to life.
Heat Shock Proteins - The other kind of Protein
I’ve never heard of these before. But I was determined to figure out so I kept researching and digging.
In a wonderful article in focusperformance.co.uk I came across these very new (to me) kind of proteins. The heat shock and cold shock portions. They kind of sound like super hero names to me and what they do for you really is pretty marvellous.
We are going to stick to the heat shock proteins since we are interested about the benefits of getting hot and sweaty in a dance fitness class. These heat shock proteins are already naturally part of our body but when our system heats up and our muscles are working hard we receive a flood the these proteins into our cells.
They help our body to cope with the extra strain on our muscles and also assist in the process of rebuilding and repairing our muscles. Meaning they help us build muscles and gain strength. I think they should be called the Hulk proteins.
They also keep watch over our muscles when they need repairing. So in short working up a sweat and heating the body up properly during a workout lets us build muscles and gain strength under the carful watch of our heat shock proteins.
Reducing Inflammation in the body
This is actually my favourite reason for exercise. After reading the book “Grain Brain” by David Perlmutter I am convinced that it is a good idea to keep inflammation in the body down to a minimu at all costs. But I am no angel. I don’t manage living 100% sugar free so I like to think exercising helps.
The study mentioned in the article by Ana Sandoiu in Medical News Today really left me with my mouth hanging open. Researchers from the University of California discovered that it is already enough to exercise for 20 minutes to reduce the inflammation and the workout doesn’t even have to be intense to create an anti-inflammatory effect.
How does this relate to getting dance fitness classes?
The beauty of dance fitness is that you are in charge of the intensity of the workout. You can go all out jumping and shaking it to every beat, working up some heat and sweat or take it slower and modify the moves to your own need. Do a little step touch in between and watch your instructor go crazy on screen or at the front of the class.
BollyX dance fitness classes are inclusive to all levels. I’m happy to provide you with personalised modifications and make sure you feel comfortable and safe in my class.
No matter if you want to sweat it out or just shimmy along a little to get those 20 minutes of workout in I’m happy so to support, motivate and inspire you every step along the way.
You can come test out the class and Sign up for 1 week of FREE dance fitness classes on Zoom here.
Can't wait to dance with you soon!
P.S. If you would like to find out more about the type of dance fitness I teach visit BollyX.com