If you’re a man, did you ever notice how your girl, your wife or your mum tells you that you’re exaggerating when you’re sick? This is not local, it’s a worldwide phenomenon. It’s called ‘man flu’ and it means that women think we act like wimps when we’re sick (because they get sick every month and don’t complain about it so much, according to them).
I have to put in a big ‘mea culpa’ here and state that I am guilty of this myself. My girl is in the beginning very compassionate, but when my ‘cold’ or ‘flu’ symptoms go on for days on end, she often tells me I’m exaggerating again.
Not wanting to be the one tell her ‘I told you so’, it is, of course, great to hear that there now is scientific evidence to support that man flu is possibly real.
Mr Kyle Sue, a clinician at Memorial University of Newfoundland in St. John, s, Canada, admits being motivated by his own bout of flu (and probable subsequent complaining by his spouse) to have himself look into the matter. To his own astonishment, he found that: “the concept of man flu, as commonly defined, is potentially unjust,”
Upon analysis of all available date for the 2004 to 2010 flu seasons, he found that in children and adults, males were always more likely to be hospitalized for the flu than females. According to Mr Sue this is because women have a higher level of the immune-boosting hormone estradiol.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">The science behind “man flu”. Brilliant reading. <a href="https://twitter.com/bmj_latest?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@bmj_latest</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BMJChristmas?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BMJChristmas</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/manflu?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#manflu</a> <a href="https://t.co/HCDyYHz0jU">https://t.co/HCDyYHz0jU</a></p>— Clare OliverWilliams (@COliverWilliam1) <a href="https://twitter.com/COliverWilliam1/status/944563350607933440?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">December 23, 2017</a></blockquote>
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John Upham, professor of respiratory medicine at Queensland University in Australia, agreed with him on that: “there is some evidence that men make weaker immune responses to some viruses than women, but how this happens and whether it is seen across all viruses is still unclear to me.”