One of the first things I gave up in high school — as I became more and more health conscious — was deodorant.
Unthinkable, I know …
But there was method to my madness. It was at that time that I developed the governing principle that I now use when making many of my health decisions. Is the decision in balance with nature? I know, I know: the concept of “nature” is tricky – it means different things to different people. So let me tell you what it means to me in relation to my body and my choices.
The human body seems to have evolved over centuries as a complex organism seeking balance in all its interdependent parts. If one process goes out of balance, the other dependent mechanisms are affected as well.
For instance, sweating is a natural means to eliminate toxins, as well as a way for our bodies to regulate their core temperature. Back in high school (I’m a few years older now!), I worried deodorants and antiperspirants would prevent the toxins from being eliminated, thus leaving them to bio accumulate in my body. Not allowing my body to rid itself of toxins put my body out of balance with its functioning for optimal health.
Those were my reasons for kicking the deodorant habit way back in the day. You might be wondering if the result was an unpleasantly odiferous Dihan! Well, let me assure you that young Dihan had a plan to ensure he always smelled sweet (even if he did refer to himself in the third person, which might have been more nerdly than smelling bad). To reduce or avoid potential unpleasant body odour, I watched what I ate. For instance, garlic in your diet exits via your sweat. In the same way you’d hold the onions on a date night, be mindful of what you eat before the date because that food comes out of places you might not be expecting!
After a period of adjustment to my new deodorant-free life (in which stored toxins were given the chance to eliminate themselves) and watching what I ate on date nights, body odour was no longer a concern. Put another way, no dates ever complained! : )
If you are worried about sweating profusely during and after sports, I’d advise you to shower more often. I was athletic, so I would shower twice a day and change my shirt and underwear as needed (it seemed expensive, toxic and time consuming to do the alternative: douse myself with cologne to mask any odours).
It’s really not such a scary thing to live without deodorant. I find it far scarier to toxify my body with chemicals and then prevent the toxins from escaping. When your body is in balance, odour becomes a non-issue.
More food for thought on natural body odour; use of deodorant vs anti-perspirants