There appears to be strong evidence that men actually do experience stronger flu symptoms and are “usually” not exaggerating when they catch the virus
An article in the British Medical Journal explores the science behind a debate that has annoyed sniffling, coughing men and infuriated women for years.
According to Dr. Kyle Sue a clinical assistant professor in family medicine at Canada’s Memorial University of Newfoundland, men really do suffer more than women when they get flu and it’s all to do with their hormones.
The study’s conclusions were disputed by Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, the Chair of the UK’s Royal College of GPs. She said “We’re sorry to be the bearer of disappointing news for half the population, but contrary to popular belief, and this article, the vast majority of robust scientific evidence suggests that flu is not sexist and there is no such thing as “man flu.”
Sputnik news reports: After thorough research, primarily on mice, the professor found evidence that actually points to men having weaker immune systems than women.
“Testosterone is a hormone that actually acts as an immunosuppressant. Whereas estrogen works in the opposite direction. They stimulate the immune system,” he told CBC News.
So it means that men with higher testosterone actually end up being more vulnerable to respiratory viruses and tend to get worse symptoms.
Sue admits the evidence is limited, particularly since much of it involved studying mice. He said that more research needs to be done to make conclusions as to whether man flu is an actual medical phenomenon.
Kyle Sue’s work led to a Twitter storm as many shared jokes about “man flu” and whether it is a myth or reality.