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Body odor and sauna

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 20, 2013 at 6:34 AM

So for a long time I had a body odor problem that I couldn't seem to mask with deodorant. Most people would have unpleasant body odor a few hours or a half day after a shower if not for deodorant, but most of them wear deodorant, so most people generally smell fine. The people who smell unpleasant generally are ones who don't wear deodorant (generally due to social obliviousness or disinterest), or ones who have unpleasant body odor even with deodorant.

I was for a while one of the latter. Even mainstream antiperspirant didn't work for very long, though it worked better. But then after cleaning up my diet, things got better, but especially things got way better after I started doing sauna regularly. In fact, if I do sauna daily (about 15 mins per session, with a ton of sweating), I don't smell even without deodorant. This is a major turnaround from when I used to have unpleasant body odor even when using plenty of mainstream antiperspirant.

This only seems to last about a day though. Today I was busy and couldn't get to the gym, and now I'm starting to get unpleasant body odor. It's not horrible, but I'd rather not have it. So my questions are, what does this correlation imply? What health issue did I have that led to bad body odor, and why does sweating a ton solve this problem? And why am I in such a precarious position that missing sauna ONE DAY out of doing it everyday for weeks straight (long sessions too, 15 mins or so each!), leads to unpleasant body odor before the day is even half over?

My protocol nowadays is to go to the gym first thing, run on the treadmill for about 10 mins, do a couple sets of a couple lifts, and then hit the sauna for 15 mins, and then take a shower and put on fresh clothes and then start my day. If I do this every day I have no body odor problem (which is a revelation for me, I've spent years feeling self-conscious around people because of this issue!). But if I miss one day--just ONE DAY!--it goes back. This is exacerbated a ton if I'm sitting for long periods of time. Skipping sauna/exercise, and then spending a few hours sitting in front of the computer, is almost guaranteed to make me not want to be around anyone until I can hit the gym again.

92d67b02a709cad2250f10848f9178e6

(2422)

on February 17, 2013
at 06:28 PM

I second this opinion. OP, is anything you are eating on a regular basis "stinky?"

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2 Answers

1
Ae8946707ddebf0f0bfbcfc63276d823

(9402)

on January 20, 2013
at 02:53 PM

I assume it also smells while you are sweating in the sauna? I know when people eat a lot of garlic (for example) the smell comes out of their pores until the body has rid itself of it completely. It seems reasonable that this could be the case for other foods too, and the daily deep sauna sweat is a way to rid your body of whatever is giving off the odor. Maybe it's worth trying an elimination diet to see if that gets rid of the smell and then slowly add back foods to try to isolate what is causing it?

92d67b02a709cad2250f10848f9178e6

(2422)

on February 17, 2013
at 06:28 PM

I second this opinion. OP, is anything you are eating on a regular basis "stinky?"

0
75d65450b6ff0be7b969fb321f1200ac

(2506)

on January 20, 2013
at 01:06 PM

Based on my experience, foul body odor (perspiration) is likely due to a systemic fungal infection (Candida?). I used to stink something fierce after a cardio workout. I also had persistent jock itch fungal infections. All the while I had a really messed up digestive tract (IBS). Changing my diet, especially going both gluten and dairy free, fixed things up. Now how the diet tackled the fungal infection is not entirely clear to me. Surely my gut became less "leaky", and my carbohydrate consumption was greatly reduced. Perhaps both are part of the solution.

_Lazza

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