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Clin Chim Acta. 1994 Nov;231(1):23-8.

Trace elements in the sweat of acclimatized persons.

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Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria.


Sweat samples were collected from the arms of 15 normal, healthy subjects while they exercised on a cycle ergometer at room temperature. Samples were analysed for copper, zinc, manganese, nickel, cadmium and aluminium by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Mean sweat levels determined for each element were as follows: 358.1 micrograms/l for Zn, 486.8 micrograms/l for Cu, 3.10 micrograms/l for Mn and 1.91 micrograms/l, 69.9 micrograms/l and 15.0 micrograms/l for Cd, Ni and Al, respectively. It appears that substantial quantities of trace elements are excreted in the sweat of those sweating habitually. Our findings suggest that the influence of diet in replenishing the body stores of trace elements and the conservation of these elements by the kidneys may play a part in preventing the occurrence of chronic deficiency states in acclimatized persons.

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