As we know from the biology classes, the stronger our immune system is, the more protection it can grant us against diseases like flu or the common cold. Scientists have been looking to find some sort of way to boost our body’s immune response in order to combat more aggressive infection. A team of researchers from the University of Alabama showed that tattoos can enhance our immune system.
Forget about balancing your meals, physical exercises and supplements, because here’s another way to crank up you immune system.
According to a team of scientists from the University of Alabama, an individual who possess more than one tattoos has a stronger immune system. As the scientists explain, each time, someone goes to the ink parlor in order to have a tattoo our body reacts to the inking process.
During the first sessions, the tissue around the tattoo can swell, and our body is generally susceptible to all sort of pathogens. Since germs are crawling inside us, our body will start producing antibodies.
After a while, the swelling fades away, and our body enters a sort of equilibrium which can only be disturbed if that person goes to a tattoo parlor in order to decorate the skin with yet another artistical representation.
Christopher Lynn, the leading scientist, explained that multiple exposures to the inking process result in an immune boost, meaning that our immune system will become better at handling the symptoms and returning to that equilibrium.
In order to test out their assumptions, Lynn and his team asked the help of 29 volunteers. According to the team of scientists, neither one of the volunteers involved in the trial had any infections prior to the experiment. Moreover, nine of the volunteers recently had their first tattoo.
So, what did the team look for in order to see if their assessment is correct? Lynn declared that there were two markers which are capable of showing how resilient our immune system is. The first tag is called immunoglobulin A, and it is an antibody produced by our body.
Generally, immunoglobulin A can be found in our gastrointestinal tract and our throats. The second marker is called cortisol, and it is a hormone attributed to stress.
It is generally known that high levels of cortisol can suppress the production of immunoglobulin A. Taking into account the two markers, the team harvested saliva samples from each participant. Upon a closer inspection, the team found out that those who got their first tattoo had a lower level of immunoglobulin A, compared to those who had 2 or more tattoos.
Far from saying that tattoos can be used to boost the immune system, the team actually managed to describe how our immune system can learn from each pathogenic encounter in order to better itself.