MadSci Network: Earth Sciences

Re: why do people sweat more in humid weather?

Date: Sun May 6 14:51:58 2001
Posted By: Denni Windrim, Director of Education, Sylvan Learning Centre
Area of science: Earth Sciences
ID: 988540632.Es

It's not that people sweat more in humid weather, it's that the sweat isn't 
able to evaporate as quickly. With the air already loaded with moisture, the 
perspiration on the skin cannot be absorbed by the air nearly as readily. 
Sweating is the body's reaction to heat, not humidity. On a hot, dry, breezy 
day, perspiration rates may be rapid, but it can also be drawn away from the 
skin quickly. On a cold, humid day, you'll notice that you don't sweat, 
unless you're working hard. Then the same thing happens - even though the 
temperature is low, the saturated air still makes the sweat linger, and you 
can get as soaked working hard at near-freezing temperatures as you can just 
lying in the sun when it's really hot.

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