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Immune System May Respond to the Sight of Disease

By HERWriter
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The journal Psychological Science reports on a study in which people were shown photos of sneezing, skin lesions and other disease symptoms. Their immune systems' white blood cells were later found to have responded aggressively. This was determined by taking blood samples before and after the pictures were seen.

These test subjects were initially shown a slide show on furniture, and then the slide show on disease symptoms. Another group saw the furniture slide show, and then pictures of people with guns.

The people watching the firearms photos didn't have the raise in the immune system that the first group had after seeing the disease pictures. The conclusion then was that it was not the stressfulness that heightened the immune systems of the first group. It was seeing pictures of disease.

"The study, while small at 28 participants, is the first empirical evidence linking visual perception and immune system aggressiveness in the presence of bacteria, the authors wrote."


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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.