Need time off because you’ve fallen prey to the ‘common’ cold yet again? Well, it turns out there’s good reason why you tend to shun yourself from family, friends and work when you’re sick.
‘Sickness behaviour’ is your body’s response to infection, which causes your body slow down other functions like eating, mobilising and socialising to fight off the infection.
Your body tends to slow down considerably during this time as your body’s processing power is far more involved in fighting off invading viruses at this time.
“Those messages are so powerful they can’t be ignored,” says Philip Chen, a rhinologist at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, reports NPR.
There’s enough scientific evidence now that suggests that having a cold is detrimental to your mood and alertness and the performance of your brain.
This explains why men being accused of whining and over-complaining gave rise to the term ‘man flu’.
A 2015 survey of food workers revealed that 51 percent of them had no choice but to ‘frequently’ or ‘always’ go to work when they were sick. This sort of a practice can have far reaching consequences.
Norovirus, an outbreak of a foodborne disease was linked to infected food workers in the industry, for industry.
“We all feel pressured to deny our own needs (often giving up meals, bathroom breaks, and yes, caring for our own illnesses) in order to meet the high pressure/high demand/productivity of the health care system,” says one doctor, reports NPR.
“That makes evolutionary sense,” says Eric Shattuck, a lecturer in evolutionary medicine and anthropology at the University of Texas, San Antonio. “Being sick is a temporary state. If you can afford to lose the opportunity to take care of your infants or lose a mating opportunity, then you can act on the sickness behavior cues without too much of a loss,” as reported in NPR.
“There’s what I suspect is a very cultural pressure to perform and to perform well, especially for what we consider minor illnesses,” states Shattuck.
Even when our bodies are saying, “Hey listen, it would be really great if you would take a rest,” adds Shattuck.
News credit : Indiatimes