Canadian doctor says there's evidence the 'man flu' is actually real

Man Flu Might Be Real After All, Claims Academic

"There need to be more studies, higher quality studies that control for other factors between men and women before we can definitely say that this difference in immunity exists", Sue told The Guardian.

And then this: "In an unscientific survey, men suffering from a flu reported taking more time off from work than women".

Lead researcher Dr Kyle Sue from the Memorial University of Newfoundland found fellas have weaker immune systems when it comes to dealing with chest, cold and flu bugs. For starters, his study didn't take into consideration other differences between sexes, like the fact that men smoke at higher rates than women (a possibly major contribution to how their bodies processes colds and flus) and are less likely to take preventive care of themselves or seek medical attention when ill. On the other side, female hormones could boost it. He pointed to two studies that used human samples that showed exposure to estrogen and oestradiol (prominently found in women) weakened normal flu symptoms.

"The concept of man flu, as commonly defined, is potentially unjust", Sue wrote.

"Men may not be exaggerating symptoms but have weaker immune responses to viral respiratory viruses, leading to greater morbidity and mortality than seen in women", says the journal article.

CBC News reports that the British Medical Journal has published new research indicating that the "man flu" is a medical condition, not just an opportunity for the men in your life to make you wait on them hand and foot.

"Man flu" refers to the idea that men may exaggerate the symptoms of a minor illness, such as a cold.

He adds: "Lying on the couch, not getting out of bed, or receiving assistance with activities of daily living could also be evolutionarily behaviours that protect against predators". "Contrary to popular belief, and this article, the vast majority of robust scientific evidence suggests that flu is not sexist", said Stokes-Lampard, who was not involved in the research.

Sue also noted that there could be benefits to the extreme energy conservation that men seem to require when afflicted with flu.

Still, some research suggests that men have more severe respiratory tract infection symptoms than women, she said.

Sue does have some tongue-in-cheek advice on how to best combat the affliction.

Quoting evolutionary theorists (and acknowledging the possibility of "author bias"), Sue wonders this: If males burnt up their energies fighting off infections, would it have been a costly distraction from their strategy of attracting sexual partners by growing bigger, stronger and faster?

Sue's study also considered the hypothesis that testosterone may have a relationship to influenza by acting to suppress the male immune system.



Latest news

New Drug Offers Hope For Treating Huntington's Disease
There is a problem at the genetic level especially at the huntingtin gene that codes for the huntingtin protein. The Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche has paid a $45m licence fee to take the drug forward to clinical use.

West Ham 1-0 Chelsea: West Ham deliver hammer blow to Chelsea
We must pay great attention to the counter-attack because they have fast players. Moyes said after the Chelsea win: "I always have compassion for players".

Cory Booker campaigns for Democrat in Alabama
The election could have major implications for the balance of power in the Senate, where Republicans have a slight edge. Nelson's attorney Gloria Allred said on Friday a handwriting analysis had concluded that Moore had signed the yearbook.

Blitzboks lose to Kiwis in Sevens semi-final
New Zealand also had the last word in the fight when Joe Webber ran in the last try of the match to take the score to 19-12. After his side's victory, All Black captain Scott Curry praised his team's performance.

Other news