Everything You Wanted To Know About SNOT


Nx86xdrewssexybody-3Written by: Kavata Kithome

Here is a fact that you probably didn’t know… Your body produces 1 to 1.5 liters of snot every 24-hours.

Uh, GROSS! But – pretty interesting, right? It may seem like a lot, but consider for a moment the purpose of mucus.

For the most part, mucus is a flatout inconvenience – from the runny nose when you have a cold to the embarrassing boogers that no one wants to see, mucus tends to get in the way.

Yet, at the same time, there is actually a lot you can learn from all the mucus you produce.

When you start to wonder about it, there are several questions that can come to mind, such as, “how much snot is normal?” “What is up with the different colors?” “Why does spicy food or working out make my nose run?”

Well, wonder no longer, friend, because I have the answers right here for you!

Why Do You Have Mucus?

The purpose of this gooey stuff is to keep your mucus membranes moist. Moisture is very important, because if the cells in the membranes dry out, they become brittle, which leads to cracking and therefore, the opening of your peripheral defense mechanisms.

As you can imagine, this is not only painful, but it can also result in the introduction of harmful substances into your system. Think of your mucus as a lubricant or liquid blanket that covers the sensitive mucous membranes; it acts like a net that catches unwanted particles and dispels them back out of your nose as those embarrassing boogers and that runny snot.

Picture yourself in a dusty environment and you breathe in – the mucus that is in your nose will pick up those dust particles and will not let them get down into your lungs and into your sinuses (trust me, life would be far more miserable if it did…).  

How Much Mucus Is Normal?

Mucus is produced in the mouth, nose, throat, lungs and gastrointestinal tracts. You typically may only notice a dollop each day, though, normally, cold weather increases the amount of liquid produced  in the nasal passage and this why you may also notice an increase during this time.

Each person produces mucus at different rates, depending on their height, weight and immune system. You would be the best at gauging how much mucus is normal for your own body.

At times, you may experience gustatory rhinitis or nasal inflammation caused by ingesting certain foods. You may notice your nose running when you eat spicy foods or go out to exercise. It is really unclear why this actually happens, so we can chalk it up to one of life’s many mysteries.

Why Does Mucus Change Color And Consistency?

What does healthy mucus  look like? It is clear and thin. When you notice a thick and cloudy change, this is a sign of inflammation, infection, or allergy. If it is yellow or green, this is a result of white blood cells dying in response to an irritation.

When Is Mucus A Concern?

If you see blood, call your health care provider immediately – it could mean that the inflammation has eroded through the mucus membrane and into little blood vessels. You may need medical attention to stop the bleeding in that case.

In other cases, if mucus has traveled into your chest and you are coughing up yellow-tinged sputum, also call your doctor – this may mean that you are experiencing pneumonia or bronchitis.

By itself, mucus is rarely a sign that there is something wrong, but if it is ever accompanied by symptoms such as muscle ache, severe coughing, lethargy, or blood, it is worth paying attention to.

Pretty interesting stuff, huh? At least you know now that your snot has more of a purpose beyond just annoying you. Do you know any tips about taking care of a runny nose during a cold, especially for this Fall season? Feel free to share with us in the comments below!

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Kavata Kithome
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Kavata Kithome

Health Advocate at One More Step
Kavata Kithome is an advocate for living your best life, full of health and longevity. While working closely with gym owners and personal trainers, she was able to sculpt a well-rounded view of fitness and understands how to incorporate it with a healthy balanced diet. She is a regular contributor to the One More Step Lifestyle brand.
Kavata Kithome
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