Sweat well for a cold

Sweating out a cold through exercise: Myth or miracle cure?

Among many tried and tested home remedies, sweating out a cold is a popular way to get rid of bothersome viruses and get fit again quickly.


But can sweating actually help with a cold, fever and cough? Is exercise suitable for sweating out a cold or is it counterproductive? With us you can find out what the myth is all about and whether general sweating really helps with a cold.

Home remedies for "sweating" against the next cold?

A hot bath, an extended visit to the sauna and then dress warmly, wrap up thickly and sweat a lot in the process. Sweating out a cold is a common method and often well-intentioned advice for braving the virus.
The circulation and blood circulation are particularly stimulated by the supplied heat.

To help stimulate sweating:

  • Foot baths and steam baths
  • Hot water bottles
  • special bath additives
  • stimulating teas

The increased body temperature leads to increased sweat production, which should literally wash the unwanted viruses out of the body.

That may sound good, but it doesn't work that easily in practice. Viruses cannot be removed by sweating. The increased supply of heat promotes greater moistening of the mucous membranes and makes the pathogens particularly uncomfortable:

  • the nasal secretion becomes more fluid, which means that the viruses can be transported away more easily
  • the increased temperature leads to an increased production of antibodies
  • the improved blood circulation means that antibodies can reach the pathogens more quickly

However, more warmth also means more effort for the circulatory system and body, as it now needs additional energy to regulate the higher temperature, which it cannot use to fight the common cold. The circulation is also weakened. Especially if you have a fever heat can also build up because it makes it more difficult for the body to dissipate heat to the outside.

Anyone who sweats a lot does not automatically get better faster and in the worst case, trying to sweat out the cold can do more harm than good.

Why exuding only helps to a limited extent against a cold

In principle, the effect of exudation cannot be assessed exclusively as positive or negative, since it depends on the extent and severity of the symptoms that occur in the case of a cold. For example, if you have a mild runny nose and only the nasal area and not the entire body is affected, sweating can definitely help Immune defense to strengthen for this particular part of the body and to accelerate the healing process.

However, they also get a cold fever, Body aches, Sore throat or to cough caution is also required. In the case of a full-blown cold, it is better to avoid sweating, because in this case the body has to use additional strength to get rid of the unwanted heat and to normalize the temperature, which additionally stresses and weakens the heart and circulation.

Can I exercise to sweat out a cold?

A clear answer: no! Even if it is often advised on the Internet or in your circle of friends to lace up your running or training shoes immediately at the first signs of a cold in order to sweat them out, sport is not recommended if you have an infection.

During a cold, the immune system is fully occupied with getting the pathogens out of the body and using them as quickly as possible all of his energy for this process. The increased exertion of endurance sports or intensive training will make your body sweat a lot, but you will unnecessarily burden it during a cold.

"Once you have a cold, you can sit it out better than sweat it out during exercise."

The following applies: the more pronounced the cold, the more dangerous the physical exertion and the resulting exudation. A fever in particular is a serious warning sign of the body. Anyone who pushes themselves to top athletic performance risks slowing down the recovery process and, in the worst case, cardiovascular problems up to and including myocarditis.

For this reason, even if it is difficult, it is better to take a break from training and avoid exercise during a cold. This is how you give enough to your body Strength and energyto fight the viruses optimally without sweating. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a walk in the fresh autumn air.

What are your secret weapons against a nasty cold? Feel free to leave us a comment, either right here on the blog or on our Facebook page. We look forward to your tips and tricks!

Editor's note:

Please understand that our article cannot replace medical or therapeutic treatment. If in doubt, contact your trusted doctor.

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