football-78394_640The Super Bowl has shown to encourage the spread of the flu and causes researches to advise attendees to be proactive in prevention. The death toll by flu to be higher in the home towns of Super Bowl-competing teams versus other N.F.L. home towns according to a study published in the American Journal of Health Economics.  The logic behind this study is that Super Bowl-competing team’s home towns are more likely to attend Super Bowl parties which happens to coincide in the midst of flu season.

Addressing the flu season, virus and becoming sick; “It is the state of your immune system — not the bacteria or virus itself — that determines whether or not you will get sick,” says Dr. Mercola.

The study focused on the deaths of people living near a team that is participating in the Super Bowl versus deaths of those living near other N.F.L. teams. The study examined deaths from 1974 to 2009.  The areas that had a participating Super Bowl team had an 18 percent increase in deaths by flu during their participating year versus years nonparticipating years and other N.F.L. nonparticipants.

Additionally, for all ages, 56 people per million die from the flu versus those living in Super Bowl competing areas – 6.6 people per million.  Generally, those who are 65 and older have a high chance of death by the flu – 40.7 people per million die – but in these Super Bowl competing areas that number rises to 48 people per million.

The death toll increase seven times also coincides when the Super Bowl is held closer to the peak of flu season.  The study found that the pattern of flu mortality in the Super Bowl competing areas only rose during that year but not the one-two years prior or after.  The researchers claimed that it was the Super Bowl that caused this change.

The study also noted that some years the flu virus strain can be stronger creating a higher mortality rate.  Also, some areas generally get the flu more easily due to demographics and the weather. All of these factors can be statistically controlled.

The flu virus spreads through saliva also known as coughing, sneezing and sometimes even talking within close proximity; 6 feet.

The study mentioned that the flu costs the nation about $100 billion because of hospitalizations, doctor visits, missed work and school.