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The Hidden Health Hazards of Clothing

I hadn't intended to write any more about clothing, but I came across a post on Facebook entitled 'Nudity Is Healthy for Brains and Bodies'. It offers a succinct appraisal of benefits of going naked and encourages naked time every day for young and old.

Written in 2012 it includes ' American naturist clubs claim their enrollment is growing 20% annually'. The article is published on the IEET's website. The Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies (IEET) is a nonprofit think tank which promotes ideas about how technological progress can increase freedom, happiness, and human flourishing. So the article thinks that the future is nude. One presumably tongue in cheek obeservation is that security at airports will be much easier if passengers are only carrying a towel and suncream!

It's also shocking to see the quote ' The global markets for swimsuits alone is expected to reach $17.6 billion annually by 2015'. All this effort and pollution for a totally uneccessary garment. Thankfully swimsuits shrank dramatically in the late 1920's or that figure would be considerably higher. My friend Keith and I gave two talks in he nude at speakeasy's in Brighton and Worthing last year. The audience was invited to join us in being naked and we said if you can't bare all, bring a swimsuit to show solidarity. Of course no one did an only a few of our friends went naked with us.

'The story of the human race is the story of men and women selling themselves short.' (Abraham Maslow). Maslow is famous for inventing the human hierarchy of needs. 'Once the powerful needs for food, security, love and self-esteem are satisfied, a deep desire for creative expression and self-actualization rises to the surface.' Maslow’s work was the inspiration for nude psychotherapy. The first session of “nude psychotherapy” was held on June 16, 1967, at a nudist resort. ' Developed by psychologist Paul Bindrim, thetherapy promised to guide clients to their authentic selves through the systematic removal of clothing.'

The basis of nude pyschoteraphy goes back to 1933 when Howard Warren published an article, 'Social Nudism and the Body Taboo' which 'was a qualitative and largely sympathetic consideration of the social and psychological significance of nudism'. Howard was reporting first hand experience of his time at Klingberg in Germany where he found that the taboo against social nudity was easily broken and had several advantages. The, admittedly, few research finding from modern times that I have recently read involve getting volunteers to complete questionnaires, rather than utilise any first hand experience. As naturists we know that many people find their first experience of social naturism as a great revelation and are keen to repeat the experience. So the biggest problem in the social acceptance of naturism is a fear of nakedness. This is not recognised, I think, as a medical condition, unlike, say, fear of flying or agraphobia (fear of open space), but maybe it should be. We all understand that fear of flying and agraphobia are conditions that profoundly affect people's potential. So, surely, fear of nakedness deserves some research to find a cure.

There is an addendum to the IEET article. It's entitled 'The Hidden Health Hazards of Clothing'. Whilst the content of the article is probably of little interest to naturists per se, I personally was interested in a condition called meralgia paresthetica. The first article suggests that this condition can be caused by wearing clothing that is too tight - either by design or because increased obesity leads to ill fitting clothes being worn. The NHS article says ' In many cases, the cause is not known'. I have this in one thigh or something similar. I do find that rest helps - easpecailly lying prone in the sun!

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