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The ‘Man Flu’ Really Does Exist but We’re Still Not Sure How We Feel About this Study

posted: 12/26/17
by: Amanda Mushro

Man Cold | A Cold with Drama

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Pretty sure some men could win Academy Awards for their roles in "I have a cold."

If you've ever rolled your eyes when your husband or boyfriend is laid up on the couch with a cold and spends an entire week moaning and groaning about their aches and pains, you might need to apologize Turns out, the 'Man Flu' is real.

According to a somewhat tongue-and-cheek study published in the British Medical Journal, the once mocked as an over-exaggeration of flu-like symptoms and dubbed the 'Man Flu,' is a real thing. Researchers are also raising questions as to whether men are "immunologically inferior" to women citing men lack the estrogen it takes to fight off the flu as well as women.

"I do think that the research does point towards men having a weaker immune response when it comes to common viral respiratory infections and the flu," says Dr. Kyle Sue, a clinical assistant professor in family medicine with the Memorial University of Newfoundland. "This is shown in the fact that they (have) worse symptoms, they last longer, they are more likely to be hospitalized and more likely to die from it." So even if you can't drum up a lot of sympathy for the 'Man Flu" suffer, maybe you can pick him up some chicken soup or a box of tissues so he feels better. Dr. Sue's also cites evidence that women respond better to some flu shots than men do.

Dr. Sue says of his cheeky study that he just wants men to have some evidence that "exaggerating" their man flu symptoms really is justified. "Perhaps now is the time for male-friendly spaces, equipped with enormous televisions and reclining chairs, to be set up where men can recover from the debilitating effects of man flu in safety and comfort," he writes. Yeah, as soon as moms get the same space to recoup from the 'Mom Cold' or 'Mom Flu' we will get around to creating those spaces. Until then, pass the tissues because it's going to be a long 'Man Flu" season.