The Purpose of the Perspiration Process

In a Ted Ed lesson written by science teacher John Murnan and animated by Dogzilla Studios, narrator Addison Anderson explains the purpose of the perspiration process that takes place in the body during exercise. Also known as evaporative cooling, sweating is controlled by triggers to the autonomic nervous system, which explains why a person will sweat while eating spicy food, during illness, with nervousness and fear.

There are a number of scenarios that can make us sweat–including exercise, eating spicy foods, and nervousness. But how does this substance suddenly materialize, and what exactly is its purpose?