When trying to burn fat and lose weight, many people decide to wear a sweat suit when exercising, or at other times, to try to increase their fat-burning. While many people feel like wearing a sweat suit is helping them burn fat faster, it may not actually help at all.
Sweat suits, sometimes called sauna suits, are usually made from rubber or plastic and are designed to keep in heat. When wearing one your body temperature increases, which causes you to sweat and, theoretically, lose more weight. As sweat suits can be quite expensive, often costing up to $100, as of February 2011, many people opt to make their own by using garbage bags, which can create the same effect.
Fat Loss Claims
Sweat suits are synonymous with athletes who have to drop a significant amount of weight in a short span of time. It is common for boxers, martial artists and weightlifters to wear sweat suits right before a weigh in or even during pre-contest training to lose a few extra pounds. Companies use this trend as a way to promote their suits as fat-burning aids.
Do They Work?
When wearing a sweat suit, you may well lose a lot of weight in a very short space of time, but this weight loss is simply water weight lost through sweat. This is not fat loss. Any weight loss results from wearing a sweat suit are temporary, and the weight will return once you are rehydrated.
The only way to shed pounds permanently is to eat a sensible calorie-restricted diet and partake in an intensive exercise regimen. Fat loss can take time and should be seen as a long-term goal, not as a task that is suited for quick fixes. Aim to lose 1 to 2 lbs. per week from dieting and exercising.
While sweat suits may have some benefit for dropping weight before a sporting contest, there are many risks involved. Sweating profusely and losing water will cause your body to become dehydrated and overheated and will lead to a mineral and electrolyte imbalance within the blood. In the past, sportsmen have even died from excessive dehydration before competitions. If you must use a sweat suit, only wear it for as long as you have to and be sure to rehydrate at the earliest opportunity.