Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Antioxidants Key to Avoiding the Flu?

Why do some people end up in bed feverish, hacking and sneezing for days from the flu — when others seem to never get sick? To answer that question, University of Michigan researchers did the first study of its kind: They infected 17 healthy people with the flu virus and discovered that everyone who is exposed to the flu actually is affected by it, but their bodies just have a different way of reacting to it. Half of the study participants got sick; the other half didn’t notice a thing. According to the journal PLoS Genetics, there is an active immune response which accounts for the resistance of certain people getting sick, and that response is just as active as the response we all know and hate, which is being sick with the sniffles, fever, coughing and sneezing. It’s just that the responses are different.

Although they understand that some people’s immune systems resist the virus, they still don’t know how or why that happens. There is a behind the scene active immune response even when you don’t get sick. What they found were differences in their biological metabolism and gene expression. These differences had to do with antioxidants.
Moreover, the researchers claim it is certainly possible that people who resisted the flu virus had very high levels of antioxidant precursors in their blood, and this may what protected them, but they cannot say that because they don’t know.

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