Man flu does exist as men suffer more from high temperatures when ill
Man flu is not a myth as men suffer more from a high temperatures than women when they are ill a neuroscientist has found.Dr Amanda Ellison, a neuroscientist as Durham University, said that men really do suffer more with coughs and colds despite being accused of exaggerating symptoms to gain sympathy.
She said men have more temperature receptors in the brain which causes them to experience the symptoms more acutely than women.
The difference is in the area of the brain which balances a variety of bodily mechanisms, including temperature.
The area is the same size in children, but when boys hit puberty testosterone starts to act on the area, known as the preoptic nucleus, making it larger.
Dr Ellison, 38, a senior lecturer at Durham, said: “When you have a cold one of the things that happens is you get an increase in temperature to fight off the bugs.”
“The bugs can’t survive at higher temperatures. When your immune system is under attack the preoptic nucleus increases temperature to kill off the bugs.”
“But men have more temperature receptors because that area of the brain is bigger in men than women. So men feel rougher when they have a temperature – and if they complain they feel rough then maybe they’re right.”
Dr Ellison, sets out her argument in her book, Getting Your Head Around the Brain, focusing on the difference between the minds of men and women.
The original research methods involved the study of brains in post mortem as well as images obtained from scans.
“My research is on how different parts of the brain communicate with each other,” she continued.
“My role is to put two and two together. There is no hard evidence that the feelings are worse in males than in females. This is a possible cause – but the argument will rage on.
“It is part of the whole argument about the differences between men and women and how their behaviour can be influenced by differences in their brains.”
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