Why the Flu Virus Spreads More Easily in the Cold

Disease Research

sickWhile no one should believe the CDC’s defilement of statistical information in order to instill mayhem in the masses about the flu (more accurately, influenza virus – and there is an important distinction since there are more like a few hundred deaths a year and not 36000 as they like to lie) there is a reason why the flu virus may spread more easily in the winter months. Read below to see why.

A team of scientists at the National Institute of Health has discovered that the flu virus’s outer covering is more stable in cold temperatures. In the winter months it hardens to a rubbery shell which could make it easier to pass from one person to another, whereas in warm weather, or summer and spring months, it melts into a liquid phase which makes the virus susceptible to the elements.

“The study results open new avenues of research for thwarting winter flu outbreaks,” said National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Director Duane Alexander.  “Now that we understand how the flu virus protects itself so that it can spread from person to person, we can work on ways to interfere with that protective mechanism.”

A magnetic resonance technique was used to come to the conclusions of the study, where the outer molecules of the virus were studied. They contain primarily lipids, which do not mix well with water, fats, cholesterol, oils, and fats. Slightly above freezing the outer membrane hardens, and once temperatures reach 60 degrees, it begins to melt.

But of course there are other reasons we tend to get sick during the winter months. In addition to lack of exercise (and thus a weaker immune system), the mass population becomes severely deficient in immune-boosting vitamin D. Vitamin D is essential for fending off the flu and sickness, and since no one goes outside to produce vitamin D in the winter months, when the sun is at its weakest point anyway, the consequence is an increased chance of sickness.

Here are 5 tips for staying well and flu-free this winter.

If you ever wanted another excuse to head south to warmer climates for the winter, the researchers at NICHD’s Laboratory of Cellular And Molecular Biophysics have just given you a reason.