The impact of clothing on human health from the perspective of Islam and science
Various fiber properties and their impacts on human health
Fibers are generally divided into two categories of synthetic and natural.
Natural fibers are also divided into three general categories of vegetal, animal and mineral fibers among which, cotton, linen, wool and silk are used more for fabric production.
Linen fabric properties
These fabrics have a smooth and bright surface and can be cleaned more quickly than cotton. Thus, they are known as a symbol of purity in ancient Egypt. Linen is good water absorbent and absorbs sweat and it causes cooling down by getting wet.
By using linen underwear in four seasons, the skin of the body which is the symbol of health will be kept soft and delicate and it also prevents abnormal weight loss.
According to its smooth surface, linen fibers are sensitive to dirt and bacteria. This property of linen is used for hygienic purposes and it is usually used for making doctors’ gown and pocket tissues.
Properties of cotton fabrics (cotton)
Fabrics that are made of cotton are conductors of heat and transfer the body heat to the outside therefore they are cool and also considered as good thermal insulators and body ventilation happens better with this fabric.
These fabrics are resistant to abrasion and can be cleaned easily. Pure cotton fabrics are used to dress burns and wounds all around the world because these fabrics make the healing process faster with their unique properties and there are no reports of skin sensitivity against cotton textiles. Because cotton fibers are the most compatible fibers with the human body, they have the greatest harmony with it.
Woolen fabrics properties
Wool is an animal fiber that is composed of specific proteins called keratin.
Physical properties of wool are its elasticity, thinness and elegance, brightness and transparency, strength and absorption of moisture, heat and electricity.
Fabrics made from wool are insulators because of the stored air in the fibers and they prevent the dissipation and transfer of heat and electrical charges out of the body.
Through insulation, these fabrics keep a warm layer around the body and can keep it warm and because of their moisture absorbency feature as well as many pores, they absorb sweat of body and evaporate it slowly and thereby maintain the body heat.
Properties of silk fabrics
Silk fabrics are produced from silk which is an animal fiber. These fabrics are beautiful and delicate and they are strong water absorbents like wool and weak alkaline such as soap and ammonia have minimal effect on them. They are not heat conductors so they preserve the heat.
This fabric is an insulator and hinders the dissipation and transferring of electrical charges out of the body. Naturally, this fabric brings harmful effects for men’s active and sensitive disposition because metabolism is naturally faster in men’s bodies and shouldn’t be stimulated by other stimulants and perhaps for that reason the holy Islam forbids men to wear silk clothes.
Properties of synthetic fibers
Today, due to advances in technology and modern chemistry, synthetic fibers have taken the place of natural fibers and unfortunately, these fibers have no compatibility with the natural and biological condition of the human body and they are the cause of various body disorders in different ways. All the clothes that are produced with synthetic fibers have electricity formation feature and thus they cause neural stimulation. They are heat conductors and the body feels excessive heat with them and because they cannot absorb sweat of body easily, they cause allergies and irritation of the skin.
The effect of clothing color on human health
According to the chromatics science, it is understood that color has specific effects on the living organism, as well as on the nature of human. Humans can separate colors in their mind and based on the experience we have learned that each color evokes different feelings in us. About the influence of colors that is written in the Quran, please refer to the article “The miracle of colors in the Quran”.
The effect of tight clothing on human health
Wearing tight clothes, especially for a long time, has significant effects on human body and endangers his health. These effects include: blood flow disorder in the arteries, decrease in respiration, increase in infectious diseases and gastric reflux during pregnancy, fatigue and contusion, digestive problems, the spread of breast cancer tumor and creation of hives, sensitivities and skin allergies.
Wearing tight pants also causes fungal and microbial infections and catching dangerous disease of masturbation which is also considered Haram, and masturbation has also harmful effects, such as jealousy, sadness, isolation, lethargy and being coward, memory loss, shortness of breath, loss of appetite and discomforts of the genital system and the retina.
The relationship between clothes styles and culture and its impact on human health
Clothing is a symbol of human character and it is an expression of his inner secrets and everyone shows his thoughts and ideology of life with the clothes that he wears.
If one doesn’t have insight and knowledge of the principles of Islamic life, he may blindly follow the West nudity culture and he will make some consequences for himself, such as moral corruption and spiritual decadence because nudity and inappropriate clothing cause various deviations and stimulation of the sexual instincts. And if people do not have control over their emotions, they will have negative and Haram lust and consequently vices such as rape, homicide, voyeurism, sexual infections and various sex diseases, divorce and not getting married will occur.
On the other hand, appropriate clothing reflects the health of spirit and wisdom of people because the wiser people get, the more accuracy they will have on obeying the divine law and they will suffer less mental illnesses such as depression, suicide, malice and sexual diseases.
The relationship between clothing style and social ethics and its effects
According to Islam, adornment is necessary but the self-adorning shouldn’t be in accordance with sensual desires and it has to be in accordance with the Islamic law that is quite clear about the standards. Because if self-adornment is not based on religion, people’s clothing will be a tool to satisfy their fame-seeking desire and it will get them enmeshed with some moral vices such as pride and arrogance, ostentation and fame-seeking. The person will experience some sadness and gloom by evoking regrets of others and wasting their lives and violation of their rights.
Some important factors in choosing clothes
Normally, these factors can be divided into general and personal factors.
General factors include physiological comfort, thermal comfort and psychological comfort which are the conditions that people feel in different clothes with different colors and materials and styles. Personal factors which are age, situation, income, culture and gender of each person are important for choosing the type, design and color of clothes.
Among these factors, age, is the most important one for choosing the right clothes and appropriate clothes should be selected according to the characteristics of each period of life (infancy, childhood, youth and senescence) to prevent negative effects of clothing disharmony with human health.
Due to the characteristics of clothing, it can have some impacts on human health. If the criteria for choosing the clothes are rational and consistent with the divine teachings, it can help to protect human health. On the contrary, if clothing selection is done based on sensual desires and Western and strangers culture, it can endanger human health.
As it was discussed in this article, each of clothing properties (color, material, size and model) leaves a special impact on the human body and this shows the importance of understanding each impacts so that we can choose appropriate clothing in order to maintain our health.