The surprising reason you feel awful when you’re sick – Marco A. Sotomayor

The surprising reason you feel awful when you’re sick – Marco A. Sotomayor

It starts with a tickle in your throat
that becomes a cough. Your muscles begin to ache, you grow irritable, and you lose your appetite. It’s official: you’ve got the flu. It’s logical to assume that this
miserable medley of symptoms is the result of the infection
coursing through your body, but is that really the case? What’s actually making you feel sick? What if your body itself
was driving this vicious onslaught? You first get ill when a pathogen
like the flu virus gets into your system, infecting and killing your cells. But this unwelcome intrusion
has another effect: it alerts your body’s immune system
to your plight. As soon as it becomes aware of infection,
your body leaps to your defense. Cells called macrophages charge in
as the first line of attack, searching for and destroying the viruses
and infected cells. Afterwards, the macrophages release
protein molecules called cytokines whose job is to recruit and organize more virus-busting cells
from your immune system. If this coordinated effort
is strong enough, it’ll wipe out the infection
before you even notice it. But that’s just your body setting
the scene for some real action. In some cases, viruses spread further, even into the blood and vital organs. To avoid this sometimes dangerous fate, your immune system must launch
a stronger attack, coordinating its activity with the brain. That’s where those unpleasant symptoms
come in, starting with the surging temperature, aches and pains, and sleepiness. So why do we experience this? When the immune system is under
serious attack, it secretes more cytokines, which trigger two responses. First, the vagus nerve, which runs through
the body into the brain, quickly transmits the information
to the brain stem, passing near an important area
of pain processing. Second, cytokines travel through
the body to the hypothalamus, the part of the brain responsible
for controlling temperature, thirst, hunger, and sleep, among other things. When it receives this message, the hypothalamus produces
another molecule called prostaglandin E2,
which gears it up for war. The hypothalamus sends signals
that instruct your muscles to contract and causes a rise in body temperature. It also makes you sleepy, and you lose your appetite and thirst. But what’s the point of all of these
unpleasant symptoms? Well, we’re not yet sure, but some theorize that they aid
in recovery. The rise in temperature can slow bacteria and help your immune system
destroy pathogens. Sleep lets your body channel
more energy towards fighting infection. When you stop eating, your liver can
take up much of the iron in your blood, and since iron is essential
for bacterial survival, that effectively starves them. Your reduced thirst makes
you mildly dehydrated, diminishing transmission through sneezes, coughs, vomit, or diarrhea. Though it’s worth noting that if you don’t
drink enough water, that dehydration can become dangerous. Even the body’s aches
make you more sensitive, drawing attention to infected cuts
that might be worsening, or even causing your condition. In addition to physical symptoms, sickness can also make you irritable, sad, and confused. That’s because cytokines and prostaglandin can reach even higher structures
in your brain, disrupting the activity
of neurotransmitters, like glutamate, endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine. This affects areas like the limbic system,
which oversees emotions, and your cerebral cortex,
which is involved in reasoning. So it’s actually the body’s own
immune response that causes much of the discomfort
you feel every time you get ill. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always
work perfectly. Most notably, millions of people
worldwide suffer from autoimmune diseases, in which the immune system treats
normal bodily cues as threats, so the body attacks itself. But for the majority of the human race, millions of years of evolution
have fine-tuned the immune system so that it works for,
rather than against us. The symptoms of our illnesses
are annoying, but collectively,
they signify an ancient process that will continue barricading our bodies
against the outside world for centuries to come.

100 Replies to “The surprising reason you feel awful when you’re sick – Marco A. Sotomayor”

  1. Once i asked my mom
    Why do we put the food in the fridge?
    She said that all the backteareas die in the fridge because its to cold for them the same hapens when you cook the food they die because its too hot.
    And i thoug that the body does the same- to kill the bactereas
    (Srr for my bad english)

  2. Human Evolution is just fairytale, your believe in fairy tales brings questions of authenticity of this video contents.

  3. 80% of comments: whos here ‘cause theyre sick
    20% of comments: Wow, interesting video!

    Who here’s my 20% squad (lol)

  4. Because your body us doing hard work to keep you good but you (like most people) are allergic to hard work

  5. I've been sick since yesterday and i woke up like 20 mins ago and whoa waking up while being sick is so awful it's like literally Satan himself came and sucked my soul out of my body and made it his toilet paper it feels so depressing

  6. I could hardly eat McDonald’s and that’s really weird to me I’ve been tossing and turning all night I thought it was near 7am where I get ready for school but nope it’s only 12 o’clock this is going to be the longest hours of my life

  7. I think the reason we lose Our appetite is because the body doesn’t want anything else in us or our stomachs while it fights the infection ,do u agree??

  8. Before video
    Me: well, it’s because your body is working hard to fight the Internal infection and replenish the lost nutrients that was ejected from your body from all the puking. That’s why you always need rest when you’re sick, you also need to eat healthy food that’ll make you feel better much faster.
    Me: wow. There’s much more to it than just working hard to combat the virus

  9. How is this surprising? I thought this was common knowledge. When you cough, vomit, or sneeze it’s obviously just your body trying to get rid of whatever is there. Do people seriously not know this?

  10. We puke 🤢🤢🤮🤮to get out toxins 🦠🦠oh our immune systems are like battling dragons 🐉🐉🦠🐉🐉🐉

  11. Watches this while sick
    Thinks about how much water I drank
    … None

  12. Honestly, the last time I had a flu, it was so bad I thought I was gonna die.
    Then again I was 11 years old…

  13. Once I had virtigo, very salty saliva, a giant body rash (y u c k), nausea, and migraines.

    Flip off, Scarlet fever.

  14. It starts with a tickle in your throat that becomes a cough. Your muscles begin to ache, you grow irritable, and you lose your appetite. It’s official: you’ve got the flu. — SUMS UP MY WEEKEND

  15. I believe Evolution is when a species adapts to its surroundings and gets smarter. For Humans, its when the Carnal mind Evolves.

  16. Pretty natural to be "irritable" when your blowing up the toilet all day long and have a temperature of 103+, etc.. If you're NOT "irritable" when unable to control you own bodily functions the issue is probably with you.

  17. all if this power in our immune system and yet some threats like type A herpes ( the herpes most people have) can hide in your nervous system, and flare up whenever it wants, making the infection permanent.

  18. I think the point of those unpleasant symptoms is that you would know when you got sick, just like how we feel pain because those who don't feel pain might be better on paper, but in reality, they won't know when they have to go to the doctor because they don't feel pain.

  19. Im really sick rn, and it hurts when im breathing rn, and i keep getting to tired to even hold up my phone and i think im gonna throw up, im also like really cold but really hot rn, ughhh its also that time of the month for me so kinda having a mental breakdown balling my eyes out

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